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By Dr. G. H. Bryan, F.R.S. 


A LTHOUGH the desmids have been favourite 
■^^ objects with microscopists since the days when 
attention was attracted to them by the writings of 
Ralfs and others, they are very rarely met with in 
collections of microscopic slides. During the ten 
years that I was a member of the late Alfred Allen's 
Postal Microscopical Society I only remember twice 
seeing desmids in the boxes circulated round the 
society, and a microscopic cabinet containing repre- 
sentatives of these minute algae is quite as rarely 
found as one that does not contain representatives of 
their near relatives, the Diatomaceae. 

The reasons which make diatoms so much more 
popular as " collectors' objects " are not far to 
seek. (1) They are more frequently found in a state 

in which they are mounted, is a fairly stable com- 
pound, certainly more so than such media as phos- 
phorus, sometimes used for mounting diatoms ; (5) 
desmids do not require the tedious adjustment of 
illumination and the use of high powers, with con- 
sequent fatigue to the eyesight involved in resolving 
the more difficult diatom tests. 

The neighbourhood of Capel Curig, in North 
Wales, is a well-known hunting-ground for desmids, 
and, while this lies rather beyond the radius of an 
ordinary afternoon outing from my present home, I 
have obtained during the past three years a number 
of good gatherings nearer at hand. The best locality 
I have met with has been the Nant Ffrancon Valley, 
between Bethesda and Ogwen Lake. Most desmids 
have a great propensity for pools and ditches filled 
with totally submerged plants of Sphagnum, and it 




Fig. t. Desmids mixed with foreign matter. A, Micrasterias 
rotata ; b b, Tetmemorits laevis ; c, Penium nagelii ; D, 
Staurastrum ; e e, Cosmarium. 

(From micro-photographs by F. Noad Clarke.) 

of comparative purity ; (2) they can be preserved an 
indefinite length of time before being prepared ; (3) 
they can be cleaned by chemical means, while desmids 
cannot ; (4) they can be permanently mounted in 
balsam, or some equally stable medium, which is not 
the case with desmids ; (5) their markings afford 
tests for the highest powers of the microscope. 

As a set-off against these advantages it may be 
said of the desmids that (1) in certain localities they 
occur in great abundance and purity ; (2) the in- 
destructible portion of the diatoms consists only of 
their flinty envelopes, while in the desmids the whole 
plant, including the cell contents, is preserved ; (3) 
they can, as I hope to prove, sometimes be cleaned 
almost perfectly by mechanical means ; (4) glycerine, 

Fell. 1900. No. 69, Vol. VI. 

Fig. 2. Micrasterias rotata, from a cleaned gathering. 
(From micro-photographs by F. Noad Clarke.) 

is in such localities that the greatest variety and the 
most beautiful forms of Micrasterias, Euastrum, 
Penium, etc., are generally found. This fact limits 
their distribution considerably, for on the mountain 
sides the Sphagnum, though usually growing in wet 
places, is most frequently not submerged in water, 
and on the other hand it is often absent from pools 
and ditches. In such cases desmids may be found ; 
but this is less probable. There is often a kind of 
sliminess about submerged plants of Sphagnum which 
sometimes betokens desmids; while in other cases 
they give a greenish tinge to the water. 

On lifting out the Sphagnum, and either squeezing 
it into a wide-mouthed two-ounce bottle or a small 
cup, which should then be rapidly emptied into the 
bottle, the desmids, when present, will if large, He 


2 5 8 


visible to the naked eye. From the contents of the 
bottle, if the material happen to be rich, sufficient 
desmids may be obtained for mounting some dozens 
of slides for oneself and friends. 

Some species of Closterium are less partial to 
Sphagnum, and seem to occur at times in large 
quantities in tiny pools of water, forming thick green 
patches. For collecting these I have found the best 
instrument to be a "fountain-pen filler" or pipette, 
a pointed glass tube with rubber cap. Other kinds, 
notably certain species of Staurastrum, seem to grow 
in ponds and rivers mixed with filamentous algae, 
diatoms and infusoria. Up to the present I have 
not been quite so successful in cleaning these as the 
Sphagnum washings, but this I attribute to the lesser 
abundance of the desmids in the gatherings. In cases 
where desmids are scattered diffusely throughout the 
water in which they grow, straining through linen is 
recommended for the purpose of concentrating the 
specimens into a smaller mass of water, and a bag 
net is advocated by most writers for fishing desmids 
out of pools, mountain tarns, lakes, and such localities. 

Preservation and Mounting. 

My mounts have hitherto been made from Sphag- 
num squeezings, patches collected with the pen-filler, 
&c, which I have brought home unstrained. Where 
I have either devised new dodges or modified old 
ones, it has lain chiefly in the modus operandi in 
dealing with the material after collection, which falls 
under the several headings of Fixing, Cleaning, Trans- 
ferring to Glycerine, and Mounting. 

Fixing When the desmids have been allowed 

to settle, and as much as possible of the water drawn 
off, the addition of a few drops of acetic acid is usually 
sufficient. I have also been successful with acetate 
of copper and Zenker's fixative. So much has been 
written on the subject of fixing fresh-water algae in 
botanical journals that I do not claim these are the best 
reagents, but formulae for diluted fixatives containing 
a given percentage of water are objectionable. This 
is on account of the considerable amount of water in 
which the desmids are contained to start with, and 
the great loss of specimens that occurs when it is 
attempted to reduce too much the bulk of this water. 
Therefore let the fixatives be made strong, and the 
water containing the desmids furnish the required 

It is necessary to fix before cleaning, if the desmids 
are mixed with filamentous algae, such as Spirogyra ; 
otherwise the latter will get broken up and become 
difficult if not impossible to remove ; besides, the 
cleaning process is apt to disturb the cell-contents of 
the desmids themselves. 

Acetic acid, and probably other fixatives, being in 
time destructive to the colour of the desmids, should 
be removed as soon as possible, whether before or 
after the cleaning process to be next described. T 
find after the more convenient, as most of the fluid is 
left behind in the cleaning process and the desmids 
can be then washed in a test-tube, which is repeatedly 

filled up with filtered rain-water, and the latter decanted 
or drawn off with a syphon as soon as the objects 
have settled. To prevent the specimens from lodging 
against the sides of a tube I use a simple test-tube 
suspender, consisting of an inverted U-shaped wire, 
across the bottom of which an elastic band is stretched, 
the test-tube being placed within this band and 
hanging quite freely. The device is as useful for 
diatoms, for which I have used it for many years, as 
for desmids. 

Cleaning. — The fixed material must be strained 
through wire gauze, and perhaps also through 
muslin gauze. This will separate the free desmids 
(unicellular forms) from Sphagnum leaves, bits of 
grass or wood, or any of the numberless other 
similar kinds of foreign matter, also from filamentous 
algae and filamentous desmids. If there is much 
residue, the material should be strained in two or 
three batches, the residue in question being washed 
off into a vessel of water to be examined for fila- 
mentous desmids, such as Hyalothecd, or Sphaero- 
zosma. A further washing and straining through 
wire gauze will remove all traces of fixative from 
this part of the material, and if the filamentous 
portion wholly consists, as it often does, of desmids 
or other algae, these may be fished out with a needle 
from the dJbris with which they are mixed, and 
transferred to a little clean water. 

The water that passes through the strainer should 
be collected in a saucer, photographic dish, or other 
shallow receptacle. It contains all the free desmids, 
but as a rule these are mixed with a very large pro- 
portion of " flocculent matter." What this flocculent 
matter is, would be rather difficult to define briefly, 
but its presence in slides, as exemplified in my 
earlier mounts (fig. I), detracts considerably from their 
beauty. It was only towards the end of last sum- 
mer that I discovered how the desmids may be made 
to separate themselves almost entirely from these 
objectionable impurities. To this end, as soon as 
the desmids have settled, the saucer containing them 
should be gently tilted on one side, and at the same 
time a slight rocking motion given to it. What 
happens is a simple consequence of the well-known 
physical properties of fluids, their viscosity, and 

In consequence of viscosity, the water in flowing 
to the side of the saucer does not move in one even 
stream, but the motion when slow consists of a 
gliding of the upper layers over the lower ones, and 
at the bottom, where the desmids are deposited, the 
water has practically no velocity. The effect of this 
motion is to roll the flocculent matter together into 
lumps and carry it off with the bulk of the fluid, 
leaving the desmids undisturbed till the edge of the 
receding wave has reached them. At this point 
capillarity comes in and draws the desmids along. 
They will soon be seen to collect in a line at the edge 
of the fluid. The slight rocking motion will help 
the desmids to collect, and if the wave be caused 
slowly to travel round the edge of the saucer, it will 


2 59 

soon be found that a bright green patch is left just 
at the tail end of the receding fluid. This patch 
must be immediately sucked up with the pen-filler 
and transferred to a test tube of clean water. The 
process may be repeated over and over again as long 
as the green patch forms, and it will soon be found 
easy to collect the patch in any part of the saucer. 
It may be useful to thoroughly shake the liquid 
between the operations, to release any desmids that 
may have got entangled in the flocculent matter. 
After a little while the patch will cease to form, 
showing that most of the desmids have been re- 
moved. On examining the small quantity of 
material drawn off with the pen-filler it will be found 
generally to consist of desmids in a remarkable state 
of purity. All the flocculent matter will be left 
behind, unless a little may have accidentally got 
drawn up with the desmids, and this can generally be 
avoided with care. 

The only objects still mixed with the desmids will 
consist of (a) Sand grains, which, fortunately, have 
not been very abundant in the material I have 
worked on. It is advisable to avoid introducing them 
when out collecting. This is attained by not gather- 
ing from the mud at the bottom of the pools. If any 
sand is present, the best way of separating it is to 
stir the desmids up in a small quantity of water and 
to pour this off after the sand has settled, but before 
the desmids have had time to do so. (i) Diaio- 
maceae. — It cannot be reasonably expected to sepa- 
rate desmids entirely from these, nor can their presence 
be said to mar the beauty of the slides, (c) Loricae 
of rhizopods, &c. — The pretty pear-shaped Difflugia 
and other rhizopods often occur mixed with the 
desmids, and to my mind rather add to the interest 
of the slides. 

(To be continued. ) 


By Edward H. Robertson. 

A MONGST other interesting objects in my micro- 
-'■*- cabinet are sundry male spiders. I must 
frankly admit that I am no arachnologist, that is to 
say, so far as classification is concerned ; my studies 
of these creatures having been confined to observa- 
tions on their habits and instincts. I am tolerably 
familiar with their structure, having devoted special 
attention to those curious organs, the palpi of the 
male, most of which are exceedingly complicated in 
their forms, apparently aimlessly. Yet the most 
complex can almost invariably be resolved into four 
or five separate parts. Popularly they may be said 
to consist of an upper cup-shaped joint, a second 
joint into which the first shuts up, like the inner case 
of a watch, and a third or fourth portion correspond- 
ing to its outermost case. There are few observant 
naturalists who have not watched in the gardens and 
fields with interest during the hot summer months 
the curious antics and acrobatic performances of 
certain vagrant spiders that appear to be trespassing 
on their neighbours' preserves. No errant wanderers 
are these ; but the males in search of their mates, 
which by some mysterious instinct they discover 
from long distances. To give a single instance of 
their courtship, let me describe what I have myself 
observed. In a quiet nook in my garden in Oxford- 
shire was the turned-up root of an enormous tree 
that formed a comfortable armchair. Before me was 
the brickwork of a pit, from which the wooden frame- 
work had been removed, and upon the walls was 
placed a layer of slates to protect the masonry from 
the weather. Here the female spiders of certain 
Lycosae congregated. For hours they would bask 
in the scorching sun rays without moving. I saw 
suddenly appearing above the edge of a slate, at 

some four inches from where a female was enjoying 
the heat, four hairy black legs, quickly followed by 
the black cephalo-thorax of a male Lycosa. In an 
instant its whole body followed. The creature now 
halted, as if to reconnoitre ; then, very cautiously as it 
seemed, approached the female, who appeared to be 
quite oblivious of her suitor's presence. It was not 
so, however, for presently, with a velocity so great 
that the eye could not follow the movement, she 
dashed at him, and he, with like celerity, disappeared. 
The female Lycosa returned to her post, but the 
other spider was not to be discouraged or baulked, 
for an instant or two later the black legs and head 
reappeared over the edge of the slate, only this time 
much nearer to his future spouse. The same tactics 
were again and again repeated until, wearied of 
watching this seemingly endless courtship, I arose, 
and prepared to move away. At that moment the 
male Lycosa had approached so near the female that 
with a dash he captured her. 

In some species of spiders the palpi of the males 
externally in no wise differ from those of the females, 
except in the possession, on the inner side of the termi- 
nal point of each palpus, of a tubercle, closely resem- 
bling in shape the nozzle of a glass syringe. From 
this simple form we may trace a long series more 
complex, until we at length arrive at those so com- 
plicated in appearance, that it would seem as though 
nature had cast together pell-mell a number of 
shapeless lumps, knobs, and excrescences, had 
indeed exhausted her resources in producing some- 
thing grotesque, and destitute of either utility or 
beauty. Yet beneath this seemingly purposeless 
waste of material there underlies a purpose which 
subserves some definite end. The functions of these 

K 2 



palpi are two- or threefold, viz., that of touch, of 
prehension, and as a means for conveyance of fluid to 
its proper destination. To describe minutely the 
details of their several parts is beyond my province ; 
I wish now to point out in a general way some 
remarkable features presented by these organs. The 
first to strike a novice are the curious instruments of 
prehension with which they are often furnished. In 
certain species of Tegenariae the terminal joints are 
developed into pincer-like processes, one pincer 
fitting into its opposite as into a sheath, thus closely 
resembling the mandibles of a parrot. The pair 
forms a very efficient instrument for holding on to 
the hairy body of the female. In another, not very 
common, species the last joint is furnished with two 
hooks, so long and sharply pointed that their use is 
at once seen to be to pierce the tough integument of 
the female. 

Various modifications of these instruments are to 
be found in different families. The most remarkable 
of all the appliances with which these palpi are 
supplied are the filaments that occur in the terminal 
joint of many species. These filaments are often six 
to eight times the length of the spider's whole body. 
As seen after preparation for the microscope, they 
are ribbon-like, furnished throughout their whole 
length with a channel, canal, or duct for the convey- 
ance of the spermatic fluid. I have never seen these 
organs other than as flattened threads, and these, 
when not in use, are, so far as my observations have 
gone, stowed away in their receptacle, not in spiral 
coils, like the mainspring of a watch, nor yet like 
the familiar spiral fibre of plants, but are folded upon 
themselves in zigzag fashion, like the arm of the old- 
fashioned "lazy-tongs." 

It may be said that, as a general rule, the length 
of these filaments is determined by the length of 
the spider's legs. In the fat, short-legged spiders 
these ribbons, where they exist, are short ; in the 
very long-legged ones, where the legs far exceed 
those of the longest-legged harvest spiders, they 
are of astonishing length. My mind was for a long 
time considerably exercised to discover the reason 
for the wonderful development of these appendages. 
A solution of the mystery presented itself when I 
was once watching the antics of a pair of extremely 
long-legged spiders, which appeared to be engaged 
in a frolic, ludicrously resembling a fencing bout, 
though the principals never came to close quarters. 
Here, then, was the explanation sought — this was 
their courtship. Owing to their extremely long legs, 
the male was never able to more closely embrace his 
mate. Without doubt he is able to throw out the 
long filaments towards the female, but, being so 
microscopic in their tenuity, they are invisible to a 
human observer, unless, possibly, some sun ray 
should reveal them. How the creature contrives to 
steer the whip-like filaments through the entangle- 
ment of moving legs I cannot pretend to explain, 
but feel confident that my solution is a correct one. 
In some species, notably the genus Salticus, the 

instrument can no longer be termed a filament, 
scarcely exceeding in length the receptacle in which 
it is contained ; and, seeing that kindred species are 
destitute of these ribbon-like appendages, it is very 
remarkable that they should possess them. 

In this subject I have briefly indicated what may 
possibly prove to be one of interest, not only to the 
young naturalist, but also to the more advanced, 
whose observations may hitherto have been confined 
to the general aspect of the male spider and his 
curious palpi. 

Woodville, Greenhouse Lane, 
Painswick, Gloucestersh ire. 


By Charles D. Soar, F.R.M.S. 

(Continued from page 234.) 


Body. — Soft-skinned. The characteristics of the 
females are very similar to those of Curvipes. In the 
males the epimera is fused into two groups, and the 
last segment of each leg of the fourth pair is much 
modified. Numerous discs on the genital plates. 

None of the species of this genus are common. 
There are several more species known on the Con- 
tinent, so additional species may yet be recorded for 

Acercus ligulifer Piersig, 1897. 
Male. — Body oval in form. Length about 
0.64 mm. Breadth about 0.48 mm. Colour a straw- 

Fig. 1. Acercus ligulifer. 
Ventral surface. Male. 

Fig. 2. A. ligulifer. 
Tarsus of fourth leg. 

yellow, with brown markings. Eyes are large and 
prominent. On the margin of the body are several 
short hairs. 

Legs. — First pair about 0.40 mm. Fourth pair 
about 0.58 mm. They are well supplied with hairs. 
The tarsi of the first two pairs of legs are wide and 
thick. On the third pair they are thin and small. 
On the fourth pair the tarsi are quite a different 
Structure from any of those we have previously con- 
sidered in having two bristles bent into hook-shape 



as shown in fig. 2 A. On the fourth segment, count- 
ing from the epimera, is a large stiff bristle of a 
bayonet form. This peculiar feature renders identi- 
fication easy. This spur is about 0.20 mm. in 

Epimera. — Arranged in two groups. Pale yellow 
in colour, same as other parts of body. 

Palpi. — Rather thick, about 0.24 mm. in length, 
and without the pegs we' find in some other genera, 
but they have a number of small hairs. 

Genital Area. — One broad platewhich reaches 
nearly across the ventral surface of the body. It has 
a number of small discs (fig. 1), about sixteen on each 

Female. — I have not yet seen a female of this 

Localities. — Found by Mr. Taverner near Oban, 
N.B. Only one male specimen at present represents 
this species in Britain. 

Acercus cassidiformis Haller, 1882. 

Male. — Body a long oval, being about 0.64 mm. 
long, and 0.44 mm. in breadth. Yellow in colour, 
with brown markings. 

Fig. 3. Acercus cassidiformis. Fourth leg of male. 

Legs. — Very similar to Acerais ligulifer, except 
that it is without the spur on fourth segment. On the 
tarsi are two strong bent spines (fig. 3), which are 
very prominent, but are quite different in shape from 
those on fig. 2. 

Epimera. — In the male appears to be all in one 
group, the line down the centre being very fine. The 
epimera also appears to be laid on another chitinous 
plate, which covers the greater part of the ventral 
surface and has a very granular appearance. This is 
a peculiarity I have not noticed on any other water- 

Palpi. — Very like the palpi of the preceding 
mite. Length about o. 24 mm. 

Genital Plates. — Are much closer to the 
posterior margin of the last pair of epimera than 
■those of Acercus ligulifer. 

These plates are also let into the chitinous por- 
tion I have just mentioned. They extend nearly 
across the body, and have numerous discs on each 

Female.— A little larger than male, being 0.77 
mm. long and 0.56 mm. in width. It has the first 
and second pairs of tarsi larger and thicker than the 
others, the same as the male. The epimera are 
extended backwards to a point, and there are a 
number of discs on each genital plate. The fourth 
pair of legs are without the spur. At first sight it 
may easily be mistaken for a female Curvipes. First 

pair of legs measure about 0.40 mm. The fourth 
pair about 0.82 mm. 

Localities. — Found in 1898 in the Lake 
District by Mr. Scourfield, and by Mr. Taverner at 
Oban, N.B., in 1899. 

Acerais liliaceus Muller, 1781. 
Male. — Body oval, rather more pointed on the 
posterior margin than the two preceding species. 
Length about 0.63 mm., width about 0.47 mm. 
Colour a dirty yellow. . 


Acercus liliacetis. Fourth leg of male. 

Legs. — First leg about 0.63 mm. Fourth leg 
about 0.79 mm. Colour same as body. The tarsi 
of all the first three pairs of legs are thin and narrow, 
not like those of A. ligulifer (fig. 1). The fourth 
segment of the fourth pair of legs is also without 
the spur. The tarsi of these legs are very singular 
in form, having a number of stiff spines on the inner 
curve. There are seven in a row at the posterior 
end of the limb (fig. 4). 

Epimera. — Very similar to Acercus cassidiformis. 

Palpi. — About 0.30 mm. in length. 

Genital Area. — Composed of two plates which 

Fig. 5. Acercus liliaceus. Ventral surface of female. 

are placed close to the posterior margin of the 
epimera. Like the others, they have a number of 
discs on each plate. 

Female. — Fig. 5 shows the ventral surface of the 
female with legs and palpi removed. Length about 
0.72 mm., breadth about o. 52 mm. It will be noticed 
how near it is in appearance to a female Curvipes. 
The first leg measures about o. 56 mm. Fourth leg 
about 1.04 mm. The tarsi are all thin and slim. 
The palpi are about o. 30 mm. General colour same 
as male— a dirty yellow with brown markings. 

Localities.— Found in 1898 in the Lake District 
by Mr. Scourfield, and by Dr. George in Lincoln- 

Haller gives a figure and description of this mite 
in his little book, but he calls it Fordia ahumberti. 

( To be continued.) 




By E. J. Burgess Sopp, F.E.S. 

(Cotu:litded/roi/i page 227.) 

"CPOR convenience we may divide our dumble-dors 
into three groups. 

Geotrupes lyphaeus, the only representative of our 
first division, is of aunicolorous shining black, although 
specimens are occasionally met with exhibiting a rich 
dark brown hue, which may however probably be 
attributed to immaturity. The species varies much 
in size, individuals ranging from three- to nearly 
seven-eighths of an inch in length. The sexes differ 
considerably in appearance, the front of the thorax 
in the male being armed with three pointed horns 
which project forwards, one over and the others at 
either side of the head. These formidable-looking 
weapons vary in length in individual beetles, in some 
instances being little more than rudimentary promi- 
nences, whilst in others the exterior spines, which 
curve slightly inwards, attain to considerably over a 
quarter of an inch. In the female two tubercles 
take the place of these outer spines, between which 
runs a well-marked raised ridge. The nature of the 
sculpture of the pro-thorax alone serves to easily 
distinguish G. typliaens from all other species of the 
genus in which the thorax is without raised pro- 
minences of any kind. In the Fabrician arrange- 
ment of Coleoptera, this beetle, together with several 
of the following species, was placed in the genus 
Scarabaeus. G. typhaeus is locally common in the 
Midland and Southern Counties of England, but 
becomes much scarcer farther north. It has been 
recorded from several places in Ireland, but does 
not appear to occur in the extreme North of England 
or in Scotland. 

Our second group comprises three beetles which 
constitute our largest British dumble-dors. Of these 
the first and second are extremely alike and 
invariably present difficulties of separation to the 
young coleopterist. 

Geotrupes spiniger is an oblong-oval beetle, of from 
five- to seven-eighths of an inch long. The upper 
side is black and often dull, the under parts very 
shining by comparison, and of a violet, blue, green, 
or bronze metallic coloration. The sides of the 
thorax are closely punctured, the markings becoming 
much more spread out upon the disc, across the 
centre of which can be traced a longitudinal line with 
a double or single row of pits or larger punctures. 
These markings on the disc however are not constant, 
and vary in distinctness in different beetles. By the 
aid of an ordinary magnifying glass it will be seen 
that with one exception the under surface of the 
insect is closely punctured and thickly covered with a 
quantity of hairs. The exception is a space lying 
along the centre of the abdomen where there runs 

lengthways a smooth bare band, both impunctate and 
devoid of pubescence. The presence of this distin- 
guishing mark is much more easily seen in some 
specimens than in others, when it is sometimes a 
little difficult to make out with satisfaction. It is 
however a point of great importance in the differentia- 
tion of the species and must therefore be specially 
sought and noted. G. spiniger is one of our com- 
monest beetles, and is widely and generally 
distributed throughout the kingdom. 

Geotrupes stercorarius, the giant of the genus, 
occasionally attains to the length of an inch. It is 
exceedingly like the last-named beetle, but exhibits 
as a rule a fresher and more polished appearance. 
The thorax is much less punctured than in spiniget 
and the central line on disc less evident. The chief 
distinguishing point lies in the absence of the central 
smooth bare longitudinal space beneath, the under- 
side of the beetle being punctured and pubescent 
throughout. Kirby mentions that the bright 
polished thighs of this and others of the genus are 
strung on strings and worn as necklaces by women in 
various parts of Europe. Although perhaps not 
quite so common as the preceding insect, G. sterco- 
rarius is nevertheless widely distributed over the 
British Islands. 

Geotrupes mutator ranges almost as large as our last 
beetle, to which it bears a certain resemblance, but 
as a rule the colouring of the upper surface is much 
brighter than in either of the other members of the 
group, in which the tints rarely pass beyond blue- 
black or black-violaceous, whereas in G. mutator they 
often assume a rich violet, green, purple, or bronze 
metallic shade. The species is readily known from 
all our other dumble-dors by the fact of its having 
nine striae between the humeral prominence and 
sutural margin of each elytron, whereas the other 
members of the genus possess but seven. G. mutator 
is a decidedly local beetle and seems to be only found 
in somewhat restricted areas in the Southern and Mid- 
Southern Counties of England and in South Wales. 
It has not apparently occurred in the North of 
England, nor has it been recorded from Scotland or 

The members of our third and last group are very 
similar in appearance. They are distinguished from 
G. typhaeus by the absence of tubercles or horns, 
and from the beetles constituting our second division 
by their average smaller size and short oval, less 
oblong, form. In addition to being dung feeders, 
the insects belonging to this group are not infre- 
quently found in decaying fungi and like situations. 
Geotrupes sylvaticus often runs slightly larger than 



the two following species, its length ranging from 
seven- to eleven-sixteenths of an inch. The upper 
surface is shining blue-black, sometimes violaceous, 
with the margins brighter. The under side is bright 
blue, purple, or violet, closely punctured and covered 
with dark pubescence. The thorax is plainly less 
punctured on the disc than at the sides. The antennae 
are reddish with the first joint darker. This chafer 
is usually plentifully distributed throughout the British 

Geotrupes vemalis varies from seven- to nearly ten- 
sixteenths of an inch. In general appearance it is 
exceedingly like our last beetle, but often has the 
upper surface brighter, and can be distinguished from 
it by having the punctuation closely distributed all 
over the thorax, even on the disc, and in having the 
antennae black. It is not an uncommon insect locally 
in many parts, but becomes rarer in Scotland. It has 
been recorded from Dublin and Portrush, and is 
doubtless present in many other Irish districts. In 
his insect fauna of Ireland Patterson states it to be 
particularly partial to sheep's droppings, in the pellets 
of which it is said to insert its eggs. 

Geotrupes pyrenaeus so closely resembles G. 
vemalis that it has often been described as a variety 
of that insect, although now accorded specific dis- 
tinction. Its general form is somewhat narrower, and 
the disc of the thorax is almost impunctate, which 
serves at once to separate it from G. vemalis, whilst 
its black antennae help to distinguish it from G. 
sylvaticus. Moreover, in the last-named beetles the 
under side is closely punctured and pubescent, whereas 
in G. pyrenaeus the abdomen is shining and impunc- 
tate in ( the centre. This is by far the scarcest of our 
dumble-dors, but is recorded as occurring locally in 
the London and one or two other districts. 

The Geotrupina are all of considerable service to 
man generally, by acting the part of scavengers and 
ridding the surface of the land of the offensive 
droppings of our larger animals. They benefit the 
agriculturist in particular, by letting air into the soil 
through their borings, as well as by manuring and 
enriching the ground with the dung which is both 
washed down by the rain and carried by themselves 
to the recesses of their subterranean retreats. 

Saxholme, Hoylake. 


By Henry Charles Lang, M.D., M.R.C.S., L.R.C.P. Lond. (i.) 

(Continued from page 238.) 

PARNASSIUS {continued). 
[P. simo Gray.] 

b. var. simulator Stgr. R. and H. 112. 
41 — 51 mm. 

Larger and darker than var. simonius. It is a 
local form, occurring in mountains south Issyk-Kul. 

Group 3. Cincti. Aust. 

The various forms which constitute this group are 
treated by Austat in a manner entirely differing from 
the method of Staudinger and other German authori- 
ties {ante, p. 171). Austat admits five species, 
whereas Stgr. and R. and H. consider them all as 
varieties and aberrations of one species, P. delphius 
Evers. In the present work I shall treat them ac- 
cording to the latter method, with the exception of 
P. cardinal Gr.-Gr., which is the only form that I can 
confidently believe to be a distinct species. It is, 
however, probable that when we have a greater 
knowledge of the habits of the different forms, and of 
the structure of the pouch in the female, many of 
them will be admitted to the specific rank. 

The group, as such, is quite distinct from the 
others of the genus, not only as regards the abdominal 
pouch in V , but in the general aspect of the wing- 
markings. The butterflies are all of moderate size, 

(1.) This series of articles on Palaearctic Butterflies com- 
menced in June number of Science-Gossip, 1899. 

the largest not having a greater expanse than average 
specimens of P. delius. The ground colour of the 
wings is hardly ever of the pure white seen in so 
many of the group Carinati. The f.w. have the two 
inner costal spots well defined, the outer ones are 
less distinct, and often merged into a wavy band ; the 
marginal semi-transparent band is well defined and 
bisected by a row of white lunules. The spot near 
an. ang. is generally very indefinite ; none of the 
spots on the f.w. are ever marked with red. H.w., 
with bases and inner margins distinctly and often 
broadly black ; the usual spot near anal angle is 
generally absent, but when present often marked with 
red. A constant character, however, is the appear- 
ance of two distinct ante-marginal black spots to- 
wards an. ang. which often have minute blue centres. 
Costal and central spots well defined, and marked 
distinctly with red. U.S. generally with red basal 
spots, but in some forms these are absent. The 
pouch in 9 completely envelops the extremity of 
the abdomen in the manner of a ring, and is bilobate 

The geographical range of this group is of com- 
paratively limited extent. It is, in fact, confined to 
Central Asia, from the west of the Altai Range to 
Southern Turkestan. Elwes did not find any of 
the forms in the Central and Eastern Altai {vide 
Trans. Ent. Soc. 1899, pt. iii. pp. 295-367). They 



are found on the mountain ranges of Turkestan at 
elevations of 9,000 to 10,000 ft. 

17. P. delphius Eversm. Bull. Mosc. 1843. 

54 — 58 mm. Aust. Parn. p. 71, pi. 17, fig. 1. 

Wings dull white, with a yellowish tinge. F.w. 
with two black costal spots, the third external one 
indistinct. Central area more or less powdered with 
black scales. Marginal transparent bands well de- 
fined. No spot near an. ang., or at most a very 
slight ill-defined trace of it. 

H.w. with the ground colour clear in central area. 
Base broadly black, more intensely in some specimens 
than in others ; thus approaching var. infemalis. 
Marginal band well defined, the narrow ante-marginal 
band sometimes containing some black spots and ter- 
minating in one or two isolated round black spots, with 
a few blue scales in their centres. Costal and central 
spots well defined, but not large ; the red colour of the 
centre is not very brilliant, but rather inclines to 
yellow or orange. Ground colour of °. wings some- 

P. clarius. 

what whiter than in $ , and less powdered with black. 
H.w. with a spot at an. ang. indistinctly marked 
with red. Abdominal pouch light brownish-yellow. 
Shafts of antennae lighter than in <?. U.S. h.w. in 
both sexes with two dull basal red spots and one 
near an. ang. ; these are absent in some specimens 
from the eastern portion of the range, or else very 
indistinctly defined ; but in those from the neighbour- 
hood of Kokand and other localities in Turkestan 
they are quite plainly marked. 

Hab. Songaria (Tarbagtai, Tianchan, Ala-tau), 
Turkestan (Kokand). VII., VIII. " In proximity 
to glaciers and perpetual snow." R. and H. 

a. var. infemalis Stgr. This variety differs from 
the type in the increased intensity of the dark 
markings, but chiefly in the extension of the black 
basal patch on the h.w., which reaches as far as the 
red-centred spots, themselves being larger than in 
the type ; the two spots near the anal angle are also 
larger. We may consider this form as a melanic variety 
of P. delphius. Hab. The Alps of Och, Turkestan, 
in the Kuldja district, at about 11,000 ft. 

b. ab. styx Stgr. S. E. Z. 196. Aust, Parn. 
75. This name is given by Staudinger to a still 
darker and more melanic form than the last, where the 
wings are entirely suffused with dusky shading, except 

along the costa f.w. between the black spots. Hab. 
The Alps of Kuldja, in company with var. infemalis. 

c. var. staudingeri Bang Haas. B. E. Z. XXVI. 
1882. Heft 1, pp. 163, 164. Aust. Parn. 79, 
pi. XVIII. fig. 1. The specimen of this form I 
have received from Dr. Staudinger resembles the 
type above described, but the markings are all much 
clearer and more pronounced. The outer marg. of 
all the wings darker and less transparent. H.w. u.s. 
without any red basal spots. Hab. Alps to the 
south of Samarkand and other places in the province 
of Kokand ; from VI. e. to VHI.b. Always above 
8,000 ft. 

d. var. transiens Stgr. in litt. Aust. Parn. Sc. 
pi. XVIII. fig. 3, illustris Gr.-Gr. Much resembles 
staudingeri, but of a less clear white in the ground 
colour. H.w. not so black at the base, and showing 
a trace of a black spot at an. ang. Ante-marginal 
spots near an. ang. elongated and without blue 
centres. Red spots well defined, but light in colour, 
connected by a thin black line. Basal red spots on 
u.s. present, but faintly marked. Hab. Pamir, on 
elevated plateaux. 

e. var. infumata Stgr. in litt. A remarkable form 
in which the wings are of a brownish-white. The 
markings well defined, but narrower than in var. 
transiens. F.w. with a black spot near in. marg., 
h.w. with the red spots well defined, but not con- 
nected with a black line ; no spot near an. ang., the 
two ante-marginal spots centred with blue. U.S. 
h.w. with red basal spots faintly defined. Hab. 

/. var. namanganus Stgr. B. E. Z. pp. 196, 
197. Aust. Parn. 76, pi. 17, fig. 3. Larger 
than P. delphius, and the ground colour is purer 


P. itordmanni. 

white, which renders the markings more distinct, 
especially the marginal and ante-marginal bands of 
f.w. H.w. with three or four black ante-marginal 
spots dotted with blue, and at an. ang. a distinct 
elongated red spot, as well as the two usual spots, 
which are well defined and bright in colour. U.S. 
as above, h.w. with two or three red basal spots. 
Hab. The Alps of Namangan, in Russian Turkestan. 
g. var. albulus Honr. B. E. Z. 1889. PI. L. 1, 
p. 161. Aust. Parn. 209. 57 — 65mm. "The 
variety albulus is the largest of all the forms actually 
known of P. delphius. Its tone of colour, deprived 



as it is of dark scales, is very bright. Its black 
markings are extremely reduced ; consequently this 
form is in effect the whitest which has yet been 
included under the head of P. delphius." Translated 
from Honrath, quoted by Aust., p. 210.) " Elle 
volait dans des sites deserts, recouverts de neiges 
perpetuelles oil la vegetation ne peut plusse manifester 
que par ses representants les plus degrades." — 
Honrath, I.e. Hag. Alps of Alai, east of Och, 
Turkestan. VI. e. 

P. orlcansi. 

h. var. maximinus Stgr. Seems to be merely a 
form of var. albulus, inhabiting the mountains to the 
south-west of Issyk-Kul Lake, Central Asia. As I 
do not know the var. , I am not prepared to sink the 
name, but from the description in R. H. it seems 
identical with albulus. 

The var. illustris Gr. -Gr. is, I believe, identical 
with var. transiens, Aust. The name is treated by 
Austat, p. 205, as a synonym of transiens, and, as it 
seems, with every good reason. There are several 
named varieties of P. delphius included by R. H., 
besides those mentioned here. I do not include 
them, as I do not think that they can properly be 
considered as belonging to the Palaearctic Region. 
If, however, I have reason at a later date to alter 
my opinion concerning these vars. of P. dolphins, 
and also vars. of other species of Parnassius, they 
shall be added in an appendix. In H. and R. all 
the known species and vars. of the genus are given, 
whether Palaearctic or not, though the rest of the 
work deals only with butterflies that strictly inhabit 
that region. 

18. P. cardinal Gr.-Gr. Aust. Parn. 83, pi. 
19, fig. 1. 

54—56 mm. 

The white ground colour of all the wings has a 
decidedly yellowish tinge, but not to the exaggerated 
extent shown in Austat's figure. The greater part of 
the f.w. is occupied by dusky semi-transparent mark- 
ings, consisting of the marginal and ante-marginal 
bands, together with a third one internal to these 
and coalescing with the ante-marginal. The only 
really black markings are the two subcostal spots. 
H.w. yellowish-white, base black as in P. delphius 
var. staudingeri, but the black shading reaches as 
far as the central red spot. Both red spots large and 
brightly coloured, surrounded by broad black rings 
and joined by a black band. Out. marg. not 
semitransparent, white with a wavy ante-marginal 

band forming a row of crescents having their 
extremities reaching as far as the edge of the 
wing, two distinct black spots at the anal extremity 
of the ante-marginal band. ? resembles the <J, 
but the markings are paler and less intense. There 
are one or two small red spots near an. ang. h.w. 
Abdominal pouch with the inferior lobes shorter than 
in P. delphius. 

Hab. Turkestan. High Alps to south of Samar- 

Group 4. Cornuti Aust. 

This group contains one species only. Abdominal 
pouch peculiarly shaped, like a curved horn. 

19. P. eharltonius Gray. Cat. Brit. Mus. 1852, 
p. 77, pi. XII. 7. Aust. Parn. 188, pi. V. 1—2. 

80 — 84 mm. 

Ground colour of wings white, with a slightly 
yellowish tinge, but whiter than in P. delphius and its 
vars. F.w. powdered with black towards base. 
Marginal and ante-marginal bands well defined. 
The two innermost black subcostal spots large and 
square. External to these a short black band. H.w. 
narrowly black along inner marg., somewhat as in 
P. apollonius. The costal and central spots present, 
but the former of these is very small and only marked 
with red in ? ; the latter, however, is larger than in 
any of the species above described ; oval in shape 
and of a deep rich red broadly edged with black 
internally and with a white dot towards upper part ; 
near the an. ang. is an oblong black spot, in 5 
broader and marked with red. There is a faint ante- 
marginal band of shading, and on it a row of five 
deep black spots with distinct blue centres. U.S. 
f.w. as above. H.w. chalky white in centre, and 

P. feldoi. 

with the costal spot marked red in both sexes. Basal 
spots black, with a faint tinge of red. Abdominal 
pouch in % light yellowish, and of the peculiar shape 
shown on page 171. 

If we except the magnificent P. imperator Oberth., 
which belongs to the Indo-Australian Region, this 
is without doubt the most splendid species of Par- 
nassius, although it does not attain the expanse of 
large specimens of P. ha, bolus. Yet the clear 

k 3 



markings, the large deep red spots in proximity to 
the blue ones, render it a striking species : especially 
in its varietal form princeps. 

Hab. N.W. Himalayas, E. Turkestan, Chinese 
Tartary. VII. — VIII. m. Frequents rocky mountain 
steeps at a great elevation, up to over 20,000 ft. 

Leech, in his great work, gives a graphic descrip- 
tion of the habits of this species and the difficulties 
attending its capture in inhospitable regions of storm 
and snow. It receives its name from Major Charl- 
ton, who discovered it about 1850, among the 
mountains of Lapsang. 

a. var. princeps. Honr. B. E. Z. 1887, p. 351. 
Somewhat larger than the type. Of a white ground 
colour, and with the markings less black. The red 
spots are larger, and in both sexes there is an 
elongated red spot near an. ang. h.w. U.S. h.w. basal 
spots more distinctly marked with red. Abdominal 
pouch in $ as in type. Hab. Transalai. VI. e. 

Group 5. Scapulati Aust. 

This group is distinctly separated from Group 4 
on account of the peculiar abdominal pouches ; but 
in it we have still the blue central ante-marginal 
spots on the h.w. The expanse of wings is much 

20. P. orleansi O berth., R. H. p. 109. 

SO—53 mm. 

Wings white, with a slight yellowish tinge. F.w. 
with the usual bands and markings. The external 
costal spots, and the one on in. marg. are joined by 
a patch of shading, so as to form a distinct central 
band. There are no traces of red on f.w. I f.w. 
with a very narrow marginal band, and a row of 

black spots internal to it, the two nearest the an. 
ang. with blue centres. The costal and central spots 
well defined and with red centres. Base and in. 
marg. deeply black, the black patch resembling in 
shape that in P. adiiis. U.s. h.w. with three basal 
red spots and one near an. ang. 
Hab. Koko Noor. 

zi. P. szcchsnyi Friv. Le Naturalist^ p. 200. 

60 — 62 mm. 

Wings more elongated than is usual in this genus. 
F.w. with all the usual spots and markings, but 
without a central band as in last, a slight trace of 
red in $ on outer subcostal spots. H.w. In marg. 
black as in P. orleansi, a black ante-marginal band 
reaching from costa to meet two large black spots 
with well-defined blue centres near an. ang. Red 
spots well defined. Ground colour tinged with 
yellowish, °- whiter than $ as regards the ground 
colour, and the markings less pronounced ; resembling 
it otherwise. The abdominal pouch is white and 
large, flattened laterally, and embracing the side of 
the last segments. Antennae in both sexes with 
elongate black clubs, shafts ringed with white. U.S. 
pale and glazed, with a peculiar chalky whiteness on 
all the red spots. 

Hab. Koko Noor. 

This species and P. orleansi are described from 
specimens sent to me by Dr. Staudinger. 

[Note. — Through an unfortunate printer's error, 
made after passing final proofs last month, the name 
of third figure on page 236 is incorrect. It should 
read P. delphius var. infemalis. — Ed. S.G.] 

( To be continued. ) 

By Reginald J. Hughes. 

(Concluded from page 242.) 

I" WILL now consider the points Mr. Wheldon 
raises in detail, and, as much as possible, in his 
order. I stated that the colours of blue eggs could 
scarcely be protective, chiefly from my personal ex- 
perience that these eggs, placed in the centre of a 
dark-coloured nest, are not at all difficult to see ; 
that a nest containing such eggs can be found more 
readily than an empty one ; and that they are more 
likely to catch the eye in looking through thej leaves 
of a shrub than a brown bird sitting on the nest. If 
eggs are coloured for protection, why are those with 
a brown pigment not evenly coloured, so as to match 
the bottom of a nest, instead of the colour being in 
spots on a white ground ? If Mr. Wheldon grants 
that only blue-green eggs could be protectively 
coloured, can he explain why various birds nesting in 
similar positions require such different amounts of 

protection, some laying blue and some red and others 
white eggs ? As a matter of fact, I do not believe 
that either the eggs or the incubating female of 
English arborescent birds require much protection. 
Our birds of prey, when they take eggs, only steal 
those of birds which nest on the ground, and there 
are protectively coloured. The brown plumage of 
English birds is chiefly useful to them when sitting 
on the bare boughs of our trees, especially in winter. 
In spite of the one exception advanced, f must 
still affirm that the eggs of most nocturnal birds are 
white, such as those of the sea-birds mentioned in 
my previous article, and of the owls. Birds possess 
the power of depositing colouring matter in very 
different degrees, and the depth of colour on a bird 
need not be proportional to the amount of food con- 
sumed capable of conversion into pigment. It will 



not be disputed that most nocturnal birds have dark 
plumage ; those comparatively light in colour are 
species upon which the process of evolution has noc 
yet conferred the power of forming a large amount 
of pigment, but in the meantime what can be pro- 
duced is not partly wasted upon the eggs. The 
nightjar, having crepuscular habits, is neither strictly 
nocturnal nor very deeply coloured ; and in its case 
pigment is especially useful on the egg, as this bird 
deposits them on the ground. It should be noticed 
that the nightjar's egg is not white, spotted brown, 
but practically completely covered with pigment. I 
think this egg is a good example to show that the 
white eggs with brown or red spots are not pro- 
tectively coloured. Place a robin's and a nightjar's 
egg on a brown background, which stands for the 
robin's nest or the ground ; the robin's egg, although 
smaller, can be seen much further off. The 
Egyptian nightjar, which lays its eggs on the sand, 
has a lighter and yellower tint. 

There are eighteen species of British birds that hunt 
their prey at night. Of these, fourteen lay white eggs ; 
the four exceptions being the nightjar and the three 
petrels I mentioned previously, which lay eggs with 
minute spots, probably different in nature from the 
pigment of the plumage. The nightjar is the only 
one of the eighteen species depositing its eggs on the 
open surface of the ground. Petrels and shearwaters 
lay their eggs, differently from most sea-birds, at the 
end of burrows. 

Before proceeding I must state the result of another 
experiment — viz. that blue or green eggs are bleached 
by chlorine gas, if care is taken that the shell be kept 
moist whilst exposed to its action. This certainly 
points to the colour being caused by a hydrocarbon- 
green. Sea-birds' eggs cannot be bleached in this 

Coming now to the fourth paragraph in Mr. 
Wheldon's article, I admit it is difficult to fully 
account for the difference between the eggs of the 
hedge-sparrow and the robin. Yet the former does 
eat some seeds ; quite enough to produce the small 
quantity of pigment required. Its near ally, the 
Alpine accentor, eats still more, owing to the scarcity 
of insect life during a large portion of the year on the 
mountains it inhabits. If the hedge-sparrow of the 
plains has descended from its mountain equivalent, 
as is not improbable, it might retain the power of 
laying blue eggs. The young of the hedge-sparrow 
are browner and more spotted than the adults, thus 
approaching the coloration of the Alpine accentor. 
I do not see anything against my theory in the case 
of the tree-pipit, &c, next cited. They are all 
insectivorous birds, and what colour exists on their 
eggs is brown or brownish, and could be easily pro- 
duced by carbonate of iron ; also the wagtails have 
darker markings than the tree-pipit or grasshopper 
warbler, whilst the black redstart, laying a white 
egg, has the most intensely coloured plumage 
of all. 

Regarding the swallow tribe, although the colours 

of the eggs vary, none have any trace of blue or 
green, the various species simply having different 
powers of depositing the same pigment. Many fowls 
use all the pigment in their plumage ; when any is 
deposited on the eggs it is carbonate of iron, derived 
from either the seeds or insects which they eat. 
Some varieties have the power of depositing the pig- 
ment ; others cannot. But the darkest breeds of 
domestic fowls lay white eggs, and the relatively pale 
— Cochins and Brahmas, for instance — buff ones. 
Pheasants have a mixed diet, including both seeds 
and insects, so it is natural their eggs should vary 
somewhat ; but as they eat chiefly insects, the pre- 
vailing colour is brown. I believe the colours of 
canaries and parrots are caused by hydrocarbons, and 
are protective in the varied hues of their native 
forests. Many parrots are green, the colour of 
the wild canary being yellow-green. The marked 
intensification when canaries are fed with cayenne 
pepper also points to the pigment being in this case 
a hydrocarbon. The pigment which would other- 
wise be deposited on the egg is thus more advan- 
tageously used up by the plumage. The goldfinch, 
and I might add the siskin, are similar cases. The 
former is very partial to evergreen shrubs, and the 
latter to fir-trees. Doves and pigeons, especially 
the original wild types, have also much green and 
blue about their plumage. 

I agree that the gannets are exceptional in so far 
as they have very little power of depositing pigment 
either on eggs or plumage ; but such exceptions are 
not contrary to my theory. The egg of a gannet is 
not really white ; it has a blue undershell. The eggs 
of several sea-birds, which are apparently white, have 
a blue or green undershell or shell membrane. The 
differences in the colour of guillemots' eggs are caused 
by individual variations in the power of depositing 
pigment. Of course all the food consumed by the 
bird capable of conversion into colouring matter 
need not be deposited. 

I now come to a rather important point. On sea- 
birds' eggs the precipitate formed by an excess of 
acid is blood-red instead of brown. To prove re- 
statement, compare that produced on a grouse's egg 
and on a common gull's. I have found that all sea- 
birds' eggs give off an unmistakable smell of sulphur- 
etted hydrogen when heated to produce Prussian 
blue, as previously described, and all the observed 
facts are most completely explained if sulphide of iron 
exists in the pigment. For let us suppose we have 
produced the green colour with a little acid and 
some ferricyanide. On adding more acid the 
chlorine would decompose the sulphide to form a 
chloride, and the liberated sulphur would displace 
the iron of the ferricyanide to form sulphocyanide of 
potassium. We thus get a mixture of the latter salt 
with a persalt of iron, and the mixture of these two 
salts produces, as is well known, a blood-red colour. 
When heated, the free hydrogen present that has 
been liberated from the acid combines with the 
sulphur and escapes as sulphuretted hydrogen, and 

K 4 



hence the smell ; ferricyanide is again formed, which 
combines with the protochloride of iron also present, 
hence the blue precipitate, and the persalt is left as 
a brown precipitate. As sea-birds' eggs are the only 
ones giving a red precipitate and producing the sul- 
phurous smell, the truth of the above theory admits 
of little doubt. Its importance lies not only in the 
demonstration of the presence of sulphur, but also 
because it proves that perchloride is really formed, 
and iron therefore must have existed in the shell. 
Even if sulphur was present in some other form than 
sulphide of iron, the result would be the same, as the 
acid would decompose any substance with which it 
was in combination. These results, certainly, in- 
directly increase the probability that the green in 
the eggs of some sea-birds is caused by sulphate 
of iron. There is nothing inherently improbable 
in the existence of sulphur on the shell of an 
egg, seeing what an important constituent it is of the 

Regarding the comparison between the barn-owl 
and the kestrel, the owl is a noctunral bird, the 
kestrel is not. Therefore the remarks I have already 
made apply to the former, whilst as the kestrel often 
lays its eggs on the ground and in other exposed 
positions their prevailing red-brown colour is ex- 
tremely useful. I agree it would be better to place 

the owls in Class 5 ; in fact, they bear the same 
relation to this class that the petrels and shear- 
waters do to Class 3. I do not, however, regard the 
subject as by any means settled, and shall continue 
my experiments, chiefly with a view to discover the 
substance which partly disguises the iron before it is 

Since writing the above I have found another very 
satisfactory proof of the presence of iron in the pig- 
ment, from the fact that the characteristic blue pre- 
cipitate can often be obtained, without heating, by 
first pouring on either hydrochloric or nitric acid, 
and then adding a very small drop of potassium ferro- 
cyanide. This method succeeds best with gulls' or 
terns' eggs, and would seem to imply a comparative 
scarcity of the disguising substance to which I have 
alluded. The nitric acid, when first poured on, forms 
a bright scarlet solution, disappears when allowed 
to dry, but leaves the colour darker than before. 
The nitric acid probably both peroxidises the iron 
and partly destroys the disguising substance. Care 
must be taken, when this acid is used, that the green 
it always forms with the ferrocyanide does not dis- 
guise the blue. This can be avoided by not using 
too much of either. 
Norman Court, 



By James Quick. 

(Continued from page 231.) 

IN the preceding articles of this series, Radio- 
graphy has mainly been considered from the 
physical point of view. To discuss it adequately in 
its medical aspect would require much more space 
than is here possible. Details of the very great 
number of surgical and other cases that have been 
treated within the last three years would well fill a 
good-sized volume. The subject has, in fact, been 
very ably treated by Dr. Walsh in his " Rontgen 
Rays in Medical Work," which book should form 
part of a radiographer's outfit. In addition to this, 
the " Archives of the Rontgen Ray," published by 
the Rebman Company, is a valuable journal, as it 
keeps the worker quite up to date in the subject ; 
the reports and proceedings of the Rontgen Society 
of London being included in its pages. 

Two of the chief aims of X-Ray experimenters 
have been the obtaining better definition of the object 
under examination, whether upon the photographic 
plate or the fluorescent screen, and being able to 
localise more accurately the position of any foreign 
growth or body in the system. Better definition and 
better contrast will certainly assist the physician in 
detecting tumours, cancers, and similar soft growths, 

which at present offer so much difficulty owing to 
there being very little difference in density between 
them and the surrounding tissues. More accurate 
localisation will enable the surgeon to perform a 
quicker and less painful operation in removing any 
foreign object, or in treating fractures, etc. 

An interesting case of the localising by the aid of 
radiography, and the consequent removal of a foreign 
body, is that of a boy three and a half years of age 
who had swallowed a halfpenny, which had lodged 
in the oesophagus. He had previously been under 
treatment for five weeks, during which time he 
showed no symptoms beyond occasional sickness. 
A radiograph was taken, which at once revealed the 
presence of the coin, lodged in the gullet at the level 
of the second dorsal vertebra. It was ultimately 
removed by means of a catch carried within a gum 
elastic catheter. 

Numerous similar examples might be mentioned, 
all pointing to the great advantage of X-Ray ob- 
servations, especially in doubtful cases. It is not 
however in the thorax only that foreign bodies have 
been localised— the abdomen has been the receptacle 
for coins and other articles. Foreign bodies have 



also been detected in the pelvis, either in the rectum 
or the bladder, but satisfactory radiographs of this 
part of the body are more difficult to obtain than 
some others. Stones have frequently been localised 
in and removed from the bladder and the kidneys, 
and of these the vesical calculi do not generally offer 
any great difficulty ; but owing' to the position of the 
kidneys, close to the vertebral column, the depth of 
the cavity and the thickness of the overlying tissues, 
radiographs of renal calculi are less satisfactory. 

In the spine also foreign bodies have been detected 
and removed. A case in point was reported from 
New York, where a revolver bullet struck the thyroid 
cartilage and, after passing through the neck, lodged 

ing any pain, and it will generally reveal a foreign 
substance, if such is there, or the condition of the 
fractured bone. If however lead lotion or iodoform 
has been used in the bandages, the latter will have 
to be removed, as the former are impervious to the 
rays. In cases where a fracture is attended with 
rapid swelling, X-Ray observations are particularly 
useful. Instances of these are fractures about the 
elbow or of the patella, or knee-cap. These, unless 
seen at once, are often impossible to examine for 
several days by ordinary methods. It may almost be 
said that under these circumstances a radiogram of 
the swollen part is absolutely the only means of 
exact diagnosis at the command of the surgeon. For 

Fig. 23. Fracture of Left Collar-bone. 

in an unknown part. A radiogram showed a dark 
spot in the fourth cervical vertebra, and with the 
knowledge thus gained the surgeon was enabled to 
operate successfully. The ball had struck the hard 
lamina of the vertebra and flattened out, after which 
it had barely penetrated the canal. 

It is perhaps the surgeon who has derived the 
greatest benefit from the application of the X-Rays. 
They have been invaluable in surgery in the detec- 
tion and examination of fractures of the various bones 
about the body. Very frequently the condition of 
the patient is such as to render it impossible for the 
surgeon to make any ordinary investigation, whereas 
a radiograph can immediately be taken without caus- 
instance, the damage may be of such a kind as to 

demand prompt excision. At any rate, the radiogram 
will indicate what form the fracture has taken. 
Figures 23 and 24 show some very interesting 
cases of fractures. The first of these is the radio- 
graph of a thorax showing a fracture of the left 
collar-bone. The ribs and other bones are clearly 
defined, as are also the lung cavities. The history 
of fig. 24 is well known. It is a radiograph of the 
foot of Holocauste, the French horse that accident- 
ally broke its leg during the race for the Derby in 
1899. The fracture is well seen, and will be appre- 
ciated by many of our readers, in consequence of the 
widespread interest taken in the event by several who 
are not in the " racing world." 

Where a fracture has ended in a fibrous union, 



false joint, or other imper- 
fect result, the exact state 
of affairs can, with one or 
two exceptions, be readily 
found out by a radiograph. 
A similar remark applies 
to a stiff joint after disloca- 
tion or other injury. In all 
these cases important indica- 
tions may be gained as to 
the best form of treatment, 
whether by resection, wiring, 
refracture, &c. 

Dr. Walsh, in the above 
referred-lo book, sums up 
very well the advantages de- 
rived from the radiographical 
method of examining bone 
injuries. He says: "In 
dealing with bone injuries 
successful radiography, com- 
pared with previous methods, 
offers the following advan- 
tages : it substitutes speed, 
accuracy, and finality for 
delay and doubt ; it affords 
exact evidence that may 
confirm or modify the dia- 
gnosis of the surgeon ; it may 
furnish both grounds for 
prognosis and hints for treat- 
ment ; it may save the 
patient the pain of useless 
and perhaps dangerous ma- 
nipulations, as well as the 
shock of anresthetics ; it pro- 
vides a permanent record of 
the precise nature of an in- 
jury; it may prove a safe- 
guard for the patient and for 
his medical attendant, both 
in the present and in the 
future ; and, lastly, it --can 
hardly fail to be of value for 
teaching purposes." 

Additional illustrations of 
fractures will be given next 
month, showing further in- 
stances of the value of these 
radiograms. (1.) 

(I.) Messrs. Isenthal, Potz- 
ler, & Co., of Mortimer 
Street, London, W., have 
kindly lent the picture of fig. 
23, and we are indebted to 
the kindness of Mr. A. C. 
Cossor, of Farringdon Road, 
E.C., for the loan of the 
print from which the illus- 
tration of fig. 24 has been 

Fig. 24. The Fractured Leg of Holocauste, the Dekuy Horse of 18 




By J. W. Tutt, F.E.S. 

npHE following is an abstract of a paper read by 
*■ Mr. James W. Tutt, F.E.S., at the Conference 
on " The Teaching of Science in Schools," held at 
the Medical Examination Hall, Victoria Embank- 
ment, on November 15th last, under the presidency of 
Mr. Graham Wallas, chairman of the School Manage- 
ment Committee, London School Board. We much 
regret that the space at our disposal will not permit 
us to print the whole of Mr. Tutt's valuable criticism, 
but careful selections have been made chiefly of those 
points that bear on the practical work of this important 

Opening with a short analysis of the difference 
between the natural and physical sciences, Mr. Tutt 
points out that the true object in science teaching to 
children should not be so much to present them with 
an array of facts, as to train them to habits of accurate 
observation for themselves. He maintains that this 
is effected better from the teaching of natural than 
physical science. The former, he says, might be 
advantageously included "in the schemes for object 
lessons, class subjects, and specific subjects in ele- 
mentary schools ; and in higher grade schools as a 
subject for results in which grants are paid by the 
Science and Art Department, or, as an alternative 
scheme to physics -in schools of science. " 

" It would appear from the Education Code that 
natural science in schools has a very fair chance. It 
happens, however, that neither the Edu:ation Depart- 
ment nor the School Board has been able to organise 
the possibilities at hand. It may be therefore 
advisable to view the teaching of natural science 
under the various heads in which it may be included 
in the school curriculum. 

"Professor Blackie it was, I think, who called 
science 'classified facts.' The difference between 
mere isolated lessons on objects and science being 
the want of homogeneity usually involved in the 
former and the connected homogeneous nature of the 
latter if it be really science. The Education Depart- 
ment in its latest Code (Instructions to Inspectors, 
1899, pp. 63-64) gives some excellent generalisations 
on the nature and value of object lessons. Then 
series of object lessons are suggested, some of which, 
crystallised into workable form, would make very 
good introductions to the study of elementary science. 
Unfortunately, some at least of these series of sug- 
gested lessons were evidently drawn up by men igno- 
rant of the excellent Preface that was to be attached 
to them, and hence, instead of finding in the Code 

thoughtful logical series of real lessons leading up to 
work in elementary science, we find many totally 
impossible object lessons, and subjects named that 
must necessarily be mere instruction and memory 
lessons. The Preface states that good object teach- 
ing ' leads the scholar to acquire knowledge by obser- 
vation and experiment, and no instruction is properly 
so called unless an object is presented to the learner 
so that the addition to his knowledge may be made 
through the senses.' This states clearly the educa- 
tional view of object lessons as an introduction to 
real science ; but the Department goes on to mention 
some of the objects to be presented in 'town schools ' 
to the learner, so that ' the addition to his knowledge 
may be made through the senses.' Such are the cow, 
the horse, the donkey, river, Atlantic liner, quarries 
and quarrymen, railways (general sketch), and 
many others. The whole thing is absurd, and 
the subject which should form the basis of all 
science taught in the higher standards of a school 
is rendered nugatory through the ignorance and 
inability of some one in power to understand first 
educational principles. To call these, and talks 
about pictures, ' object lessons,' is nonsense, and the 
Department, as shown by its Preface, knows it. I 
am insisting on this phase of the subject, because I 
know my fellow-teachers may say, as I have often 
said myself when the claims of other subjects have 
been pressed, that there is no room in the time-table 
for an additional subject. I want to show that we 
already have in our time-tables a subject which, 
properly treated, may be made subservient to the 
best uses of natural and physical science. If it were 
the business of some one who knew and understood 
his work, to see that the object lesson lists of every 
school were not made up of isolated scraps, but had 
a certain homogeneity and consisted of thoroughly 
graduated lessons every one of which could be 
actually illustrated by the object described, the 
child might then be trained in the habit of making 
accurate observations and, under guidance, of giving 
an accurate description of the observations made. 

" We should thus convert our object lessons into a 
highly important and useful educational instrument, 
having a distinct purpose in the school curriculum 
and forming the foundation of a real scientific train- 
ing to be given in the upper standards 

" The class subjects of elementary science, as the 
name implies, ought to consist of a series of con- 
nected and graduated lessons. They should proceed 


still more definitely on fixed lines, and present a 
coherence and homogeneity that would be self- 
evident. Here we come to a serious point in our 
consideration of the subject — that is the evil of too early 
specialisation. I will go so far as to state my per- 
sonal opinion that there should be no specialisation 
in science in our schools. Even in the upper 
standards it tends to stultify individual effort and 
concentrate the particular line of mental develop- 
ment into a fixed groove, whilst the working for 
examination results must necessarily train the memory 
instead of the faculties. If the evils of specialisation 
in the upper standards are thus evident, what must 
they be in the lower classes where the mental pro- 
cesses are slow and need gradual unfolding under the 
guidance of the teacher ? 

" It is, I assert, no part of an elementary teacher's 
work to attempt to finish a child's education, but only 
to put it in the right way of completing that education 
for itself. The elementary course, then, should be 
homogeneous. It should not be ' animals ' in the 
first year, 'plants' in Standard II, 'magnetism' in 
Standard III, 'mechanics' in Standard IV, and so 
on, arranged, maybe, according to some special 
qualification that the teacher of each successive class 
through which the boy passes may possess, nor 
should it be restricted to a single subject continued 
through successive years, for this would bring about 
that specialisation to which I have already strongly 

"There are a few general principles involved in 
the study of chemistry, physics, mechanics, botany, 
zoology, and geology, that we are all agreed should 
form the basis of all advanced and later study in 
every branch of science. Every standard should 
have some five or six practical lessons in each of these 
branches, and there should be a close connection 
between the lessons from Standard I— VI, each 
succeeding series being based on the preceding year's 
work. If this were done in every school under the 
Board that at present takes elementary science for 
object lessons, we should educate children in such 
a way that they would leave school with a really 
good basis for future scientific work. 

"It will be observed that I have not offered any 
special plea for natural science as apart from physics 
and chemical science, as I consider that all science 
work in schools should be somewhat general in 
its character, and these branches are really in any 
general system complementary one to another. 
Still, the lessons should be absolutely definite as to 
their nature and character, and, as far as possible, 
from the very first, put only into the hands of 
teachers who can deal with them practically. One 
can hardly help girding at the present more or less 
rigid method of class teaching still adopted in too 
many of our schools, because it necessitates, if the 
work is to be strictly educational, that the teacher's 
knowledge should be more or less encyclopaedic, and 
beyond the powers of the average intellect. There 
should be in every senior school under the Board at 

least one teacher who has a real practical acquaint- 
ance with the general principles of elementary 
science, and who should be mainly employed in 
teaching them. To give general information on a 
so-called scientific subject is one of the easiest things 
possible ; to give a science lesson that shall involve a 
real scientific training to the child is quite another 

As Mr. Tutt rightly remarks, it seems the opinion 
of many excellent educationists that it should be 
part of our aim to turn out biologists, physicists, 
chemists, electricians, and so on ; whilst the really 
necessary point is to train keen, well-informed, 
thoughtful boys and girls, with ability to observe, 
draw deductions from their observations, and form 
correct conclusions from facts presented to them. 

The merely utilitarian side of school work, as illus- 
trated by the fact that so much attention is paid in 
the form of government grants to subjects tending 
only to wage-earning, is heartily condemned by the 
speaker. Again, he says there is an assumption that 
education is only to be a means for earning immediate 
£ s. d. He points out that in the science schools 
earning grants from the Science and Art Department, 
results are required not in the general intelligence of 
students in scientific subjects, but in a knowledge of 
the facts of chemistry, physics, etc. " Here, it ap- 
pears, almost the pinnacle of scientific educational in- 
efficiency is reached, for the subjects taught are not 
considered means to an end (the end being the proper 
training of the student), and the manner in which the 
instruction is given is a purely secondary matter." 

Mr. Tutt ends by pointing out that the most per- 
fectly educated man or woman is he or she who has 
the greatest power of interesting himself within him- 
self, or by himself, and we find this in the man or 
woman who has an intellectual hobby to set off 
against the worries consequent on the struggle for 
existence. The elements of natural science taught 
rationally in school would lay the foundation of many 
a scientific naturalist, and may help to produce a 
Lamarck, Buffon, Huxley, or Darwin in the future. 

Wasps and Moths.— On September 6 last I 
was awoke in the morning by a curious sawing noise 
in my room. On looking around to see whence the 
noise proceeded, I discovered it came from some 
setting boards which I had hung on the wall con- 
taining specimens of Triphaena fimbria. On ex- 
amining the boards I found five or six wasps there. 
Three of the wasps were settled on the boards at 
the grooves busily engaged in severing the wings of 
the moths from the bodies. The wings were covered 
over with paper so that the wasps could only get the 
moths by disjoining them at the junction of the wings 
to the bodies. The wasps had entirely severed the 
wings of three moths, and were cutting out their 
heads when I interrupted them at their work. I have 
never come across an instance of this kind before, 
though I have frequently had the bodies of micro- 
lepidoptera eaten by spiders. I should therefore be 
glad to know if any of your readers have met with 
similar instances. — Aubrey C. Stoyel, The Briars, 
Watford, Janita)y 1 900. 


2 73 


By M. Lane. 

"\ \J"& had left grim old Konigsberg, the coronation 
place of the Kings of Prussia, behind us, 
struck by its thick brick walls, huge ramparts with 
iron-studded gates, and astonished that these for- 
midable-looking defences should be of no avail in 
modern warfare. At a distance of about four or five 
miles, however, we passed by some insignificant- 
looking forts, which, forming a ring round the old 
town, make it, we are told, by dint of their far- 
reaching guns hidden under a green surface, the 
greatest stronghold of Eastern Germany. For a little 
while the railway line ran along the river and passed 
on to the open country, which bears a striking re- 
semblance to the vast, flat, monotonous, but fertile 
plain of Northern Germany. Wide fields deprived 
of their golden crops but speckled with white geese 
and sleek cows met our eyes in quick succession. 
Now and then a stately mansion peeped out from 
under the leafy shelter of its orchard, or we passed 
large villages, the thatched roofs of their farmhouses 
having storks* nests on their gables, whose inhabitants 
had gone to their winter resorts on the Nile. Wherever 
we looked there was a line of dark pine woods along 
the horizon. Sometimes they came quite near, so 
near that one could even see a squirrel jumping from 
tree to tree, or the gleam of wooden houses between the 
dusky trunks of the pines, habitations for people who, 
away from the dust and heat of towns and the lurking 
germs of disease, wished to bathe their lungs in the 
health-giving zephyrs wafted from the conifers. 

A few stations farther on we had to change in order 
to go to Palmnicken, where are the amber mines. The 
branch line owes its existence to the mines ; it was 
made about fifteen years ago, when the mines had 
been ten years in operation. 

" Gold of the Baltic Sea," as amber is often called, 
is found in various places on the globe, but nowhere 
in such abundance as on the shores of the Baltic from 
Memel to Danzig, and there principally on the coast 
of the oblong piece of land jutting out into the sea 
between the Kurische and the Frische Haff. 

Being as hard as stone, it is no wonder that amber 
was considered in ancient times to be a mineral. It 
is now ascertained, without doubt, to be a vegetable 
product, a fossil gum of a coniferous tree, and from 
time immemorial it has been used as a jewel by many 
a fair lady. From the coast of the Baltic the Phoe- 
nicians are supposed to have brought it to the countries 
on the Mediterranean. Why should not those bold 
ancient traders have gone so far in their search ? It 
is true they left no traces there as on the coast of 
Cornwall, for instance, where many names of places, 
by their mellow sound or numerous vowels, evince 
their southern origin, and are pronounced by philolo- 

gists to have originated in the language of Tyre and 

It is not to be wondered that amber, looked upon 
as a precious stone, should be claimed by the State. 
The Teutonic Knights who were once lords over East 
and West Prussia watched its production with a 
jealous eye. The inhabitants of the villages on the 
amber coast had to bind themselves by oath to 
deliver all the amber they should find or gather. 
Notwithstanding, depredators were numerous, al- 
though they were punished by death on the gallows, 
which at brief intervals arose along the beach, like 
fingers stretched out in ominous warning. 

The original method of gathering amber was very 
primitive. When strong gales had been tossing the 
waves, a great amount of seaweed was thrown on the 
sands. Men, women, and children then gleaned the 
pieces of amber from the meshes of this vegetable 
network, or simply picked up what was washed on 
shore. To prevent thefts, the Order of the Teu- 
tonic Knights did not allow amber cutters to settle 
within their dominions, and all the raw produce was 
sold to the guilds at Bruges and Liibeck. After the 
Reformation, however, when Prussia became a duke- 
dom, her first duke, Albrecht, had amber manu- 
factories established at Konigsberg as well as Danzig. 

It can be understood that the peasantry in the 
villages and the landed proprietors on the amber 
coast derived considerable pecuniary advantages from 
gathering amber, but there were great drawbacks too. 
No person was permitted to approach the beach 
without a special license ; no villages were frequented 
for bathing or as summer resorts. Besides, the 
population stood under a kind of police surveillance, 
that did not fail to have a demoralising effect. No 
wonder a change which took place in the earlier part 
of this century was hailed with enthusiasm. Leases 
were then given to villages and estates, to gather and 
sell whatever amount of amber could be got, pro- 
vided a certain sum of money was paid as royalty. 
The favourable effects of this measure were soon felt. 
Thefts ceased, bathing places were established along 
the coast, and, last but not least, there was a general 
effort made to increase the production. Formerly 
people had waited for gales to stir up the seaweed, 
now they went out in their boats to dredge. In 
older times a storm proved most productive, now 
they set out on calm clear days with long spears in 
their hands to stir the yellow stone from among the 
shingle in shallow places, and to raise it in their 

In 1867 these leases were slightly altered ; a new 
method, that of mining, was exempted from them, 
and the license for this operation was given to two 



Memel merchants, Messrs. Stantien & Becker. 
Hence the figures of amber statistics soon went up 
amazingly. Whereas, in former times, the result of 
gathering was about six or seven tons a year, it 
rose to twenty times as much. The expenses being 
formerly very heavy, the actual gain did not amount 
to more than ,£1,500, while with improved working 
more than .£35,000 flowed into the treasury of the 
State. To bring this about Stantien and Becker did 
not stop at mining alone. They took over the leases 
of part of the coast in order to scour it thoroughly. 
The result at the time was evidently of great benefit 
to themselves and also to the many workmen they 

On ttie north-western promontory of what is called 
the amber coast, there stands a lighthouse, named 
Briisterort. Some twenty-five years ago, its neigh- 
bourhood was the scene of great stir and movement. 
The amber merchants had a school for divers esta- 
blished there. The beach, as well as the shallow 
bed of this tideless sea, is strewn in many places with 
large or small stones, and amber was found in great 
quantities between them. A settlement grew up 
within a short time. Workshops for making and 
mending the divers' suits, dwellings for workmen or 
officials, warehouses, stables and carthouses were 
erected, while tradespeople of all kinds settled there. 
Early in the morning the divers came marching up 
in rank and file, their foremen at the head of each 
battalion. The boats were manned, launched, and 
having reached their destinations, the anchors were 
cast. The divers then put on their unwieldy uni- 
forms, the metal helmets with their round glass 
windows being screwed over their heads. With pick- 
axes in their hands to move the stones, and with 
bags at their belts to hold the amber, they were 
lowered into the sea, a few white bubbles marking 
the spot where they had disappeared. On fine days, 
for stormy weather meant a holiday with half-pay for 
the divers, one could have seen them through the 
transparent waters, kneeling, standing, or lying down 
in their search. If they wanted to rise, they pulled 
a line attached to their belts, the other end of which 
was in the hands of one of the boatmen, who, 
besides working the air-pumps to supply the divers 
with the necessary atmosphere for breathing, had to 
mind the boat and watch the changes in the weather. 
It took several years to exhaust this field of action. 
Then the settlement was abandoned and the divers 
were established at Palmnicken. 

At the same time that this was going on, another 
colony sprang up a little farther towards the north. Year 
by year, in order to keep an open channel for naviga- 
tion in the Kurische Haff for boats going and coming 
to and from the towns of Memel or Kbnigsberg and 
the river Niemen, the authorities had to dredge the 
Haff. The mud produced, it was noticed, contained 
a great amount of amber, whence it was concluded 
that a considerable quantity of the precious substance 
must lie on the bottom of the Haff. The amber 
merchants then offered to pay for a lease for searching 

for the amber and to do the cleansing work into the 
bargain, if they were allowed to dredge the Haff. 
This offer was accepted. 

On the narrow strip of sandy hills which separates 
the fresh waters of the Haff from the salt waters of 
the sea, a colony sprang up near Schwarzort, with 
wooden houses, dwellings for the labourers and 
officials, warehouses, workshops, just as at Briisterort. 
To these a wharf for shipbuilding and a harbour were 
soon added. The dredging machines, at first pro- 
pelled by oars, were soon replaced by steam launches, 
their number rising to that of a small fleet. Here, 
too, military discipline was kept among the workmen, 
who, as the work went on by day and night, were 
thrice relieved, thus realising a socialistic dream of 
eight hours' labour. 

At the last station but one before we reached 
Palmnicken and its amber mines, we were reminded 
of the old lords of the soil, the Teutonic Knights, by 
a church with high walls and roof ; the tower stand- 
ing at a corner instead of at the entrance to the nave. 
Once the building was a castle of the Order, and not 
till later turned to religious purposes ; hence the 
tower of the old castle now serves as the steeple of 
the church. Not far from the village, there rose two 
hills above the undulating plain. Their rounded tops 
would not only afford a fine bird's-eye view over land 
and sea, but their memories will surely be duly 
impressed on the little school-children in this flat 
country. Shortly before reaching Palmnicken, we 
got a peep of the dark blue, choppy sea, with white 
foamy crests on its short waves. 

The beach here, too, is scattered over with rocks 
and stones — some red, some blue, some speckled. 
They are boulders of granite, porphyry, sienite, 
gneiss, in structure and colouring showing a close 
relationship to the rocks of the Norwegian mountains. 
Like Holland, east and west Prussia rose from the 
sea by the action of its great rivers, the Vistula and 
Niemen. As the current became slower, the gravel 
and earth which they carried were deposited on their 
beds near their entrance to the sea, and so formed 
the shore-line. Having no mountainous backbone 
of its own, this alluvial soil depends for its stones 
and rocks upon wanderers from other parts of the 
world. They are supposed to have been carried 
thither by the glaciers which once covered this part of 
Europe as they now cover Greenland. This moving 
mass of ice, when coming to a standstill — that is, 
when melting — left on its borders the fragments of 
rock it had razed off and carried in its progress. 
Hence there are districts in Prussia where, for miles 
upon miles, not a stone is to be found on the fields, 
the farmers being put to great inconvenience by 
having to get them for building purposes from long 
distances. In other parts the fields are literally 
choked with stones, they not only being used there 
instead of bricks for barns, stables, and houses, but 
also for stone fences round the fields. 

( To he concluded. ) 




British Dragonflies. By W. J. Lucas, B.A., 
F.E.S. xiv. -r 356 pp., 9 in. x 6 in., with 27 
coloured plates and 57 figures in text. (London : 
L. Upcott Gill, 1900.) 3 is. 6d. 

There is not anything so stimulating to the study 
of any group of living animals as a good illustrated 
text-book in the language of the students. Hence 
we may expect much activity among British ento- 
mologists in investigating the numerous unsolved 
problems in the natural history of our native Odonata, 
now there is such an excellent handbook on these 
handsome insects. The time spent upon the subject 
will for a long period to come repay the research, 
for, though we have only some forty native species 
as yet recognised, what strikes one most about Mr. 
Lucas's book is that beyond the identification of 
species and a few of the nymphs, comparatively so 
little is really known of the economy and distribution 
of dragonflies. The book before us is sure to give a 
great impulse to the study of them. It is excellently 
produced by the publisher, especially the drawings by 
the author, both in black and white, and the beautifully 
coloured plates. The general arrangement is satisfac- 
tory. Chapter I. is the Introduction, from which much 
may be learned by the uninitiated about dragonflies ; 

Aeschna grandis. Ovipositing. (Bjitish Dragoiijlies.) 

also full instructions with regard to terminology and 
identification. The main body of the work is occu- 
pied by careful description of genera and species. 
The subject-matter is arranged on uniform plan under 
the headings of {a) synonymy, (*) original description 
in nomenclator's own language, (<) size, (a) male 

imago, (e) female imago, (f) immature colour, (g) 
variation, (h) nymph, (i) date, (/;) habits, and (/) dis- 
tribution. Chapter VIII. is occupied by suggestions 
for breeding the 
nymph, and the 
following or last 
chapter with 
useful instruc- 
tions for the 
capture of dra- 
gonflies and pre- 
paration for the 
cabinet. Al- 
though a some- 
what costly 
book, no really 
earnest entomo- 
logist can afford 
to be without 
the new work 
on " British 
Dragonflies " by 
Mr. Lucas. By 
permission of 
Mr. Upcott Gill 
we reproduce 
two of the 
smaller illustra- 


{British Drag07ifties.) 

The Natural History of Selborne. By Gilbert 
White, edited with notes by Grant Allen, xi. + 528 
pp., loin, x 7in., with 180 illustrations by Edmund 
H. New, and two portraits. (London and New York : 
John Lane, 1900.) 2i.r. net. 

We have already had the pleasure of noticing some 
of the earlier parts of this work, in which form it ap- 
peared (Science-Gossip, New Series, ante p. 21), 
and, now that it is completed in book-form, we are 
glad to find the high standard of production pro- 
jected by the publisher has been fully maintained. 
As a whole, this edition of White's " Selborne " can- 
not fail to gladden the hearts of book collectors and 
the more cultured bibliophiles, always in search of 
the beautiful in book form. Printed with old style 
type on rough edged paper, and illustrated in Mr. 
New's quaint style of drawing, this ponderous volume 
is indeed a handsome addition to a library. As 
editor, the late Grant Allen has largely confined him- 
self to certain popular criticisms in the form of foot- 
notes and a dozen-page Introduction. This latter is 
chiefly historical and biographical, written in his 
trenchant style, which at times ran to unjustness for 
the sake of literary effect. Such is shown in the last 
sentence of the first paragraph on page xxxvii. Yet 
it is not all so, and this Introduction is a distinct addi- 
tion as another essay on the lore of Gilbert White, 
and his never failing sweet inspirations of the breezy 
country with its living things. 

A Natural History of the British Lepidoplera. By 
J. W. Tutt, F.E.S. Vol. I., iv + 560 pp., 9in. by 
6in. (London : Swan Sonnenschein & Co., 1899.) 

Though a year late, we have received a copy of 
Mr. Tutt's now well-known work on the British 
Lepidoptera, which forms one of the best text-books 
on the Order, though some of the older students may 
not agree with his proposals for reforming classifica- 
tion. This volume bears evidence of careful, honest, 
and thoughtful labour, and this first instalment gives 
promise of future valuable work. 

• 7 6 



Heat for Advanced Students. By Edwin Edser, 
A. K.C.S. viii + 470 pp. , 7 in. x 4! in., illustrated by 
213 figures. (London : Macmillan & Co. 1899.) 
4s. 6d. 

This book will certainly prove a welcome one 
among students of Heat. There are a good many 
text-books on Heat already published, but they do 
not show the superior treatment that marks Mr. 
Edser's book throughout its 466 pages. The whole 
matter is compiled in an excellent manner, and the 
subject is brought quite up to modern knowledge by 
the insertion of some recent researches. Each 
division of the subject is treated with remarkable 
clearness, so that an attentive reader, if he has 
already studied Heat a little, will not have much 
difficulty in mastering the contents of the present 
volume. Numer- 
ous experiments 
are described in 
detail, and many 
new pieces of 
apparatus figure 
among the 214 
illustrations. Of 
these, special 
mention may be 
made of the 
following. Fig. 
22 illustrates 
Weedon's pa- 
tented apparatus 
for the absolute 
coefficient of expansion of solids, which has already 
been described in detail and illustrated in Science- 
Gossip {vide p. 197, December 1898). One of its 
advantages is the direct measurement of the expan- 
sion by means of micrometer gauges. An elegant 
but simple apparatus is that illustrated in fig. III. 
This is Dr. Lehfeldt's 
arrangement for the 
comparison of vapour 
pressures of liquids. 
The tubes and bulbs 
are first emptied and 
dried, the capillary 
ends D D' are sealed 
off, and the whole 
arrangement exhausted 
by connecting B' with 
a mercury pump, after 
which B' is sealed off, 
disconnected from the 
pump, and placed be- 
neath mercury in a 
vessel, when it has its 
end broken off. The 
mercury rises in the 
tubes A to a desired 
height, then B' is finally 
sealed off. In a similar 
manner the bulbs C C 
can be partially filled 
with the liquids of 
which the vapour pres- 
sures are to be com- 
pared. The whole arrangement can then be 
placed in a bath and heated to any desired 
temperature. The difference in level of the 
mercury surfaces in the gauge A gives the 
difference between the vapour pressures of the 
two liquids. 

Weedon's Patent Expansion Apparatus 
(Heat for Advanced Students.) 

Fit;, in. Lehkeldt's 
Vapour Pressure. 

(Heat for Advanced Students.) 

An ingenious apparatus, designed by the author 
for comparing the relative conductivities of vari- 
ous metals, is described and illustrated on pp. 
426-427. It consists essentially of a metal pot, 
through the bottom of which are soldered the ends 
of the various rods, which extend downwards. Each 
rod is provided with a small light metal index, as 
shown in fig. 199, and which slides easily upon its 
rod. Before an experiment is made these indexes 
are pushed up until the top wire ring of each is in 
contact with the bottom of the vessel. They are 
then held there with wax. Hot water or oil is now 
poured into the vessel, and, as the heat is conducted 
along the rods, the wax becomes melted, and the 
indexes gradually slide down through different dis- 
tances, depending upon the conductivities of the rods. 
The squares of the distances are proportional to the 

U n fo r t u n ate- 
ly, some errors 
have crept into 
this excellent 
book, which, 
no doubt, will 
be corrected in 
the next edition. 
These are the 
following: — P. 6, 
in the calculation 
at bottom of 
page, r should 
= 1-5, not -15; 
p. 14, line 15, for 
Reaumur temp : x 9 , Reaumur temp : x 9 

4 " I - +32! 

p. 14, line 16, for (Fah " temp. -32)+ 5 read 

(Fah=temp:-32)x 5 . p _ ^ Km ^ fg) , t0Q = {1 + 

at 3 ) -I read t°C = (I + at) 3 - I ; p. 205, line 22, for 
m read E ; p. 300, second line from bottom, for ' 
(pv + dv) read p(v + dv). The book is one of the 
brightest and most useful physics text-books we have 
met with for a considerable time.—/. Q. 

Experimental Physics. By the late Eugene 
Lommel. xxi + 664pp., 9 in. x6in., with numerous 
illustrations. (London: Kegan Paul & Co. 1899.) 

The translator of this book has well succeeded in 
the arduous task of presenting to the English-speak- 
ing student one of 
the German stand- 
ard text - books, 
and also in keep- 
ing strictly to the 
method of the 
author — the late 
Professor von 
Lommel. The 
whole subject of 
Physics is treated 
in a general ex- 
perimental manner 
and with little ma- 
thematics. The 
book has been 
divided into ten 

parts, viz.: Motion, Solids, Liquids, Gases, Heat, 
Magnetism, Electricity, Electrical Currents, Waves 
and Sound, Light. Each of these divisions is 

Fig. iq8. Edser's Conductivity 


(Heat for Advanced Students.) 



treated in detail and in a clear and vigorous manner. 
Considering that this work is the translation of ithe 
1896 German edition, the matter in one or two 
places might have been a little more in accord with 
present knowledge. Taking only, one example we 
may instance the liquefaction of gases on pp. 227- 
231. Nothing is apparently said of the valuable 

Fig. 199. Enlarged View of Index. 
(Heat for Advanced Students.) 

work of Olskewski, Dewar, Linde, or Hampson ; in 
fact the regenerative processes of liquefaction are not 
mentioned at all. Nevertheless the book may prove 
a useful one to general students of physics. —J. Q. 

Botany for Beginners. By Ernest Evans. 
vi + 290 pp., 8 in. x 6 in., illustrated by 271 figures. 
(London and New York : Macmillan & Co., 1899.) 
2s. 6d. 

This little work has the desirable object of pro- 
viding students with a means of obtaining practical 
knowledge in the study of plants. Though only 
intended as a guide to those commencing work, the 
carefully drawn illustrations, prepared by Mr. W. E. 
Holt, and the excellent matter in the text, make it a 
useful text-book to all, even advanced students of 
this fascinating study. The author, who is a natural 
science master of the technical schools at Burnley, 
commences with a study of the morphology of plants, 
proceeding to the anatomy, thence to the analysis of 
sections, the histology of the cells, tissues, and roots, 
the physiology of growth and movement, classification 
and plant description. A good index further enhances 
the value of this small text-book. 

The Birds of Eastern North America. Water 
Birds. Part I. By Charles B. Cory. ix+ 143 pp. 
1 1 in. x 9 in., with numerous illustrations. (Chicago : 
Field Columbian Museum, 1899.) 

This is the first part of a series of beautifully 
illustrated works on the birds known to occur east of 
the ninetieth meridian. This part deals only with 
the water birds, but it is proposed to issue a series of 
these "keys," in which the species are grouped 
according to size, not in genera, as is usual. It is 
believed this plan will enable a novice to accurately 
identify any of the birds. All measurements are 
given in inches and fractions of inches. The illustra- 
tions, which are well produced, are many in number, 
and include many well known in this country. 



Striae as Evidence ov Ice Action. — Mr. E. A. 
Martin, under the head of striae and ice action in a 
recent issue of Science-Gossip, certainly shows that 
great care should be exercised in the identification of 
glacial striations. There is no doubt that, under 
certain conditions, features greatly resembling glacial 
striae may be produced on solid rock surfaces by 
other agency than that of ice action, but such instances 
are few and far between, and are the exception rather 
than the rule. I of course refer now to whole sur- 
faces of rock being striated, not odd scratches, such 
as might be produced with a pair of hobnailed boots. 
Yet is there not a possible chance of too much being 
made of these non-glacial striae, and a danger of 
getting to the very opposite extreme ? I think there 
is, and the note from the pen of Dr. P. Q. Keegan 
in your December issue (p. 222) has been written, I 
fear, whilst enthusiastic on the subject. Dr. Keegan 
states that striae "are evidence of nothing at all, 
except the inroads of the weather, lichens, etc." 
This is all very well for a scratch or two of limited 
dimensions upon a rock, but will not account for the 
striae covering yards and yards of rock, we might 
almost say acres, which exist in certain parts of 
Britain. Several of these genuine glacial striations 
are many yards in length, and in some cases their 
width and depth can be measured by inches. Further, 
the general direction of the striae usually agrees 
with the a priori view of the direction of the 
glacier. It agrees with the slope of the valley, and 
is in rough parallel with its sides. Where lateral 
moraines exist these also coincide with the striae, whilst 
the transportation of boulders, their orientation, and 
numerous other indications strongly support the 
theory that the striae were made by "a monster glacier 
filling up the valley," and by that only. No amount 
of lichens or inroads of the weather could possibly 
produce such phenomena. I regret I am not per- 
sonally acquainted with the " grand rocks edging the 
valley where the Derwentwater reposes," but from 
numerous excursions made into the neighbourhood of 
the lake district, I have no hesitation in saying that 
they are in all probability genuine glaciated rocks, 
and that Mr. Ward was correct in his description. 
We have the most unmistakable evidence that the 
whole of the lake district was extensively glaciated. 
The striae on a single surface of rock must be consi- 
dered in connection with the whole glacial phenomena 
of the neighbourhood, and the striae and other glacial 
features will be found to agree with rather than be 
in conflict with each other. The recent researches 
of Mr. Joseph Lomas on glacial striae, published in 
the " Proceedings of the Liverpool Geological As- 
sociation " and in the *'. Racialists' Magazine," are 

Geological Exchange Meeting. — The next 
meeting will take place at Science-Gossip offices 
on Wednesday, February 7, from 5.15 P.M. to 7 P.M. 
The success hitherto attending these meetings has 
not been so great as could be desired, and it is 
hoped that geologists will be present in greater 
numbers with their specimens. 




Electric Rail Welding.— In the "Electrical 
World and Engineer " recently appeared a descrip- 
tion of the electric rail welding plant of the Lorain 
Steel Company, Ohio, as employed in making 7,500 
rail joints in the Buffalo street railway system. The 
trolley wire current is transformed by a rotary con- 
verter carried on the car into single-phase current of 
300 volts pressure, and then down to 5 or 7 volts by 
another special transformer. The pressure being so 
greatly reduced the current obtained is enormous, 
as much as 25,000 amperes being produced. The 
joint is made by means of fish-plates, welded on to 
either side of the web under heavy pressure. Each 
joint takes fifteen minutes to complete. 

New Reading Microscope. — Following upon 
the description in last month's Physics column of the 
vernier microscope, made by Messrs. John J. Griffin & 
Sons, Limited, we here illustrate two additional instru- 
ments made by this same firm for somewhat similar 
purposes: i.e. the measurementof small distances. The 
first of these is a reading microscope, the design being 
an improvement upon that described in the course 
of instruction in Practical Physics at the Royal 

The instrument is provided with an extra fitting as 
shown enlarged in the top left corner of the illustra- 
tion, so that the microscope may be used for either , 
horizontal or vertical measurements. The instrument 
has an English objective and a No. 1 eyepiece fitted 
to the microscope tube, and is proving very useful in 
numerous physical measurements, such as thermp- 
meter calibration, indices of refraction, &c. The in- 
strument is made entirely of brass, so that it may be 
used in connection with magnetic measurements ; 
otherwise, if iron was present in any of its parts, it 
would interfere with the readings owing to magnetic 

A Point-cathetometer. — The second instru- 
ment is what is known as a point-cathetometer, and 
is also intended for the rapid measurements of vertical 
distances, but greater ones than the above referred-to 
instrument is adapted to measure. Into a firm iron 
tripod base, which is provided with levelling screws, a 
vertical brass tube about 1 m. long and of 2 to 
3 cms. diameter is screwed. This tube is accu- 
rately engraved through- 
out its length into milli- 
metres. Over the tube 
slides a brass collar 
which has a stiff rod fixed 
to it and bent as shown 
in the illustration. The 
length of the collar is 5 
cms., so that when it is 
pushed down to the base 
its top edge will read 5 
cms. The length of the 
rod is such that when the 
collar is in this lowest 
position the point of the 
rod approximately 
touches the table, lati- 
tude being given by the 
levelling screws upon the 
base. Suppose now the 
difference in height be- 
tween two liquid columns 
is required ; the collar is 
pushed up until the point 
of the rod is on a level 
with the surface of one 
of the columns, and the 
reading is then taken. A 
similar measurement is 
made with the other 
column, when the differ- 
ence in height at once is 
given. In numerous 
other physical experi- 
ments the point-cathetometer is useful. In fact it has 
become quite a desideratum in a physical laboratory. 
Messrs. Griffin also make a cheaper cathetometer in 
which the graduated brass tube is replaced by a firm 
boxwood scale. 

College of Science. Upon a rigid brass horse- 
shoe base is fixed a substantial brass tube, at the 
top of which is fitted a double rack and pinion 
working the tube carrying the microscope, &c. 
This tube has fixed to it and moving with it a 
vertical scale, accurately graduated into millimetres. 
By means of a vernier attached to the fixed pillar, 
vertical distances of -j' n th mm. can be easily read off. 

Thawing Water-pipes with Electricity. — 
From the "Canadian Electrical News" we learn 
that frozen water service pipes are there thawed by 
means of alternating currents of electricity passed 
through the pipes themselves. A pressure of 20 to 
50 volts is used, obtained from a portable transformer 
connected with the street mains. A current of 200 
to 400 amperes is passed through the frozen pipe 
until the water flows freely, which usually takes place 
in a few minutes. 


2 79 


MiCROscoriCAi. Examination of Steel. — The 
microscopical examination of steel and of alloys in 
engineering laboratories is no new thing, but its value 
and utility in the steel industries were brought by 
Mr. C. H. Ridsdale prominently before the members 
of the Iron and Steel Institute at their autumn meet- 
ing. Mr. Ridsdale gave some of the results of his 
study of soft steel up to the present time, and ex- 
plained how he had systematised its microscopic study, 
and adapted it to the commercial as well as the 
scientific requirements of a laboratory where com- 
mercial interests predominated. In the interesting 
discussion that followed stress was laid upon the im- 
portance of formulating a method of procedure, by 
means of which uniformity of results might always be 
obtained. Prof. Porter, of Montreal, stated that he 
was engaged in equipping an expensive micro- 
laboratory in his college at Montreal, and remarked 
that the importance of the subject was fully recog- 
nised both in Canada and in the United States. 

New Objective Changer. — An objective 
changer has recently been brought under our notice 
by the courtesy of Mr. F. W. Watson Baker. It is 
both inexpensive and effective, and is less cumbrous 
than that of Zeiss. Into the end of the microscope 
tube fits a screwed ring provided with a semicircular 
jaw beneath, the jaw itself lying immediately beneath 
the ring and being kept against it by a spring be- 
tween two projecting arms. Accordingly on com- 
pressing the arms the jaw leaves a space of about a 
quarter of an inch between it and the above ring. 
Each objective is fitted with another steel ring only a 
little larger in diameter than the milled head of the 
objective. The objective, instead of being screwed 
into place as usual, is then simply slipped into 
position beneath the body tube of the microscope, 
and is there securely gripped by the semicircular 
jaw. As the ring on the objective is made to fit 
accurately into a recess in the ring that is screwed 
into the body tube, the objective itself is well 
centred, though it might possibly be not quite satis- 
factory for the highest powers. Those of our readers 
who prefer this type of objective changer to the 
ordinary rotating nose-piece will find this simple 
little device useful. It is made by R. Fuess, Steglitz, 
near Berlin, and can be obtained through the London 
opticians. Its price, with four adapters, is only 
fifteen shillings. 

Crouch's " Histologist " Microscope. — Mr. 
Henry Crouch, of 92 Duncombe Road, London, N., 
has submitted for our examination the latest model of 
his " Histologist " microscope, which is specially 
designed for the use of students, particularly medical 
students. We give an illustration of the instrument. 
The coarse adjustment is by the now customary 
diagonal rack and pinion, and the fine adjustment is 
of the micrometer screw type. The foot is a claw- 

tripod, and as such is perfectly steady. The stage is of 
the horseshoe pattern, but in the microscope sub- 
mitted to us the advantage of this was somewhat 
discounted by the sub- stage ring being fixed in 
position beneath the stage. The microscope itself 
is well made and finished, and is specially de- 
signed to withstand the rough wear and tear of a 
laboratory. There are the usual plane and concave 
mirrors. The objectives generally supplied are the 
§-inch, N.A. -28, and ^-inch, N.A. -65, both being 
arranged to work approximately in the same focal 
plane. The apertures are moderate, as is suitable 
for histological work ; but the objectives are excel- 
lent ones, and will bear favourable comparison with 
any others in the market at the same price. The 
price of the f-inch is 15s. and of the <t-inch 30s. 
We had also an opportunity of examining a i-inch 
N.A. -26 at 15s., and a ^V-inch oil immersion N.A. 
1*3 at £$. This last was a really fine lens. The 
microscope, as described above, with double nose- 
piece, \ and g- inch objectives, two eye-pieces, and 
mahogany case, is sold at £7 7s., or with Abbe con- 
denser N.A. 1 - 2, with iris diaphragm, 30s. extra. 

Histologist Microscope. 

Standardisation of Sub-stage and Draw- 
tubes. — The Royal Microscopical Society, which 
has already done so much for the standardisation of 
the various parts of the microscope, and whose 
standard for the thread of objectives, known as the 
" Society Screw," is now adopted by opticians 
throughout the world, has passed some important 
resolutions with regard to the standardisation of the 
sub-stage and of the internal diameters of the draw- 
tubes of microscopes. There are few workers who 
have not experienced the annoyance and difficulties 
caused by the present want of uniformity among our 
leading makers. The present step is yet another in 
the direction of uniformity, though we could wish it 
had been a more firm and decided one. As it is, it 
will not do away entirely with the evil complained of, 



even if makers can be persuaded to adopt its some- 
what various suggestions. The resolutions arrived at 
by the Council on December 20 last were : that the 
standards adopted by the Council in 1882 be with- 
drawn ; that the standard size for the inside diameter 
( >f the sub-stage fitting be 1-527 inches (38 786 mm.) ; 
that the gauges for standardising eye-pieces be the in- 
ternal diameters of the draw-tubes, the tightness of the 
fit being left to the discretion of the manufacturers. 
Further, that the following four sizes of the internal 
diameters of the draw-tubes be adopted : — R. M. S. 
No. 1, -9173 inch (23-300 mm.); R. M. S. No. 2, 
1-04 inches (26-416 mm.); R. M. S. No. 3, 1-27 
inches (32-258 mm.); R. M. S. No 4, 1-41 inches 
(35-814 mm.) ; and that plug and ring gauges of all 
the above sizes be kept in the Society's rooms ; also 
that the public, on payment of a small fee, be allowed 
to inspect them. The size of the sub-stage is that 
now in fairly general use amongst English makers, 
the variations being not more than a few thousandths 
of an inch. The sizes of the eye-pieces are arrived 
at as follows : — No. 1 is the Continental gauge ; it is 
in general use on the Continent, and has been adopted 
by several of our English makers for their students' 
size instrument. No. 2 is the mean of the sizes used 
by the English trade for students' and small micro- 
scopes, and is apparently meant to meet the objec- 
tions of those makers who have hitherto clung 
tenaciously to their own originally adopted sizes. 
No. 3 is the mean of the sizes used for medium-sized 
binoculars and other microscopes of a similar class, 
and is apparently also an attempt to meet the 
objections of those makers who have hitherto de- 
clined or been unable to adopt the Society's standard. 
The standard adopted by the Society for this eye- 
piece was formerly 1-35 inches, and therefore those 
makers who fell into line and adopted this size 
will now have to alter everything— which seems to 
us a somewhat ungrateful return for their loyalty, and 
likely to inconvenience equally those who already 
possess microscopes made to the old standards. Size 
No. 4 is, we think, that adopted by Messrs. Powell 
& Lealand alone, and is not likely to become general, 
as it is too large for most instruments. We cannot 
help thinking that two standard sizes only would 
have been better — the Continental size for students' 
instruments, and No. 3 size for large instruments. 
However, we are grateful for any advance in the 
direction of uniformity, and earnestly trust that all 
our leading makers will now adopt these standards. 
Buyers of microscopes could materially assist by 
insisting on their microscopes being made in accord- 
ance with the Society's standards. We may add 
that the standardisation of the eye-piece cap, and 
apparatus to be used above the eye-piece, will follow 


W. C. B. (Appleby).— You will find the points on 
which you ask for information fully explained in the issue 
of March last of SCIENCE-GOSSIP, under the heading 
of " Microscopy for Beginners." where microscope 
manipulation is dealt with. With regard to dark 
ground illumination, we may simply say in the mean- 
time that the size of the stop must be proportioned to 
the aperture of the objective ; the higher the aperture 
the larger the stop. Try making various stops for 
yourself out of blackened cardboard. We are glad 
you find our columns so helpful, and we are always 
pleased to answer questions. 


By F. Shillington Scales, F.R.M.S. 
{Continued from page 249.) 

Dissecting can be done with the simplest appara- 
tus, but some form of dissecting microscope or stand 
is a great convenience, and an actual necessity where 
much or prolonged work is done. The microscope 
itself can be used together with the lowest-power 
objective, but in this case the image will of course be 
inverted, unless what is billed an " erecting lens " be 
used. To protect the stage, Mr. West's table stage, 
described and figured in Science Gossip, Vol. VI., 
N.S., page 30, is a most simple and practical device ; 
it is provided with hand-rests, and can be used also 
as a mounting-table. There are, of course, different 
types of dissecting-stands made by the opticians, of 
which, perhaps, the cheapest is Leitz's small dissecting 
microscope, sold at 20s. without lenses. As we are 
writing primarily, however, for those who want to 
economise as much as possible, we illustrate here a 
small stand that can be made at home by any one 
able to use his hands, and that will cost but a 
few shillings. The design itself is not original, as 

Fig. 1. Home-made Dissecting-stand. 

a similar but more elaborated stand is figured in 
opticians' catalogues at two guineas and upwards. 
The drawings almost explain themselves. The total 
length should be about 14 inches, and the width 
about 4 inches. The sloping rests for the hands 
might be, say, 2 inches high at the lowest ends, and 
4 inches at the highest. This latter measurement, 
however, should be governed by the size of the mirror, 
which must have ample room to swing. The mirror 
itself is a simple penny mirror such as can be bought 
at any toy-shop, and it is let into a piece of wood 
which swings on wooden or metal pivots between 
the two centre uprights. This piece of wood could 
be hinged to the bottom of the stand instead ; but in 
that case the mirror would not remain central when 
lifted at an angle. A little more skill would be 
required to arrange universal movements. The stage 
is a piece of plate-glass 5 inches x 4 inches, ground 
at the edges, and can be ordered at any glazier's. It 
lifts out, if necessary. Two pieces of cardboard of 
the same size should be cut to go underneath when 
required ; both should be covered with black paper, 
and one should have a hole about I finches in dia- 
meter in the centre. The whole stand might be 
made of wood § inch thick, mahogany being prefer- 
able to pine, and the dovetailing or grooving should 
be finished as carefully as possible. 

The holder for the lenses can be made, as illus- 
trated, by fitting a piece of {-inch brass tube about 
8 inches high into a small stand, say, i\ inches 
in diameter. A piece of springy ^-inch brass wire is 
then rolled several times tightly round the upright as 
shown ; one end is turned up about 3 inches away 
from the stand, and the other end is shaped into a 
ring to hold a watchmaker's eye-glass. This last can 
be bought anywhere for iod. or is., and makes a 



most useful dissecting lens. On the turned-up end 
can be put an ordinary pocket-magnifier in ebonite 
mount, such as can be bought for is. and upwards, 
according to the number of lenses. 

This stand, simple though it be, will be found a 
useful and efficient piece of apparatus. It will be 
money well spent, however, if the beginaer provides 
himself at the outset with one of the beautiful 
aplanatic lenses sold by all the principal opticians. 
They give exquisite definition together with a flat 
field, are excellent for dissecting, and are also the 
most perfect of those magnifiers which the real 
microscopist can always bring forth from his pocket 
when wanted. The most useful powers do not 
exceed ten magnifications, and a lower power gives a 
larger field and greater working distance. The 
cheapest of these lenses is, we think, made by 
Messrs. Beck ; its power is about six, and the price is 
ns. 6d. ; but all the other leading opticians make 
similar lenses at a slightly higher price. 

For dissecting requiring to be done under water or 
methylated spirit, a piece of cork loaded with lead 
is useful ; or a mixture of paraffin and stearine may 
be run into the bottom of the dissecting-dish, as 
recommended by Mr. Lewis Wright. This paraffin 
mixture is transparent, which is generally an ad- 
vantage ; but where an opaque background is needed 
a mixture of bees-wax and tallow darkened with 
lamp-black can be used instead. 


FIG 2. 


Fig. 2. Home-made Lens stand. 

The dissecting-dishes themselves can be obtained 
in many different forms from the opticians. A very 
useful one can be manufactured at home from a 
piece of gutta-percha, as suggested by Dr. Carpenter. 
A piece of gutta-percha of suitable size and thickness 
is warmed until it is sufficiently flexible, and then the 
four sides are turned up to make a dish somewhat 
similar in appearance, though of course much 
smaller, to an ordinary photographer's developing- 
dish. One corner can be shaped into a spout for 

Very useful for small dissections are the flat glass 
capsules sold at from 4s. to 6s. the dozen. These 
are hollow cells ground in square solid blocks of 
glass, with a piece of plain glass lying on the top as a 
cover. They are not only useful for dissecting, but 
form convenient receptacles for stains, clearing 
solutions, &c, as a thin film forms between the 
capsule and the cover when the latter is in place, 
and keeps the contents from evaporating. For 
staining sections, however, we have found an 
ordinary artist's porcelain palette, with welled 
divisions, as useful as anything, and the white back- 
ground is often of service. 

We will deal more particularly with dissecting, 
however, when we come to mounting and the 
necessary preparation. 

( To be continued. ) 


We are glad to be able to announce that Mr. 
J. T. Carrington, the Editor, is continuing to im- 
prove in health. He has so far recovered as to be 
removed from London, but it will be some time before 
he can resume active work amongst us. Mr. Carring- 
ton desires us to sincerely thank the many readers of 
Science-Gossip who have so kindly written ex- 
pressing sympathy with his serious illness. Un- 
fortunately other members of the staff have been 
prostrated during the month, but are now on the road 
to recovery. 

The Fish Hatching experiments recently installed 
by the Crystal Palace School of Fish-Culture, which 
have attracted such extensive interest, have now been 
resumed, and the operations may be witnessed daily 
at the Palace free of charge. The first batch of ova 
of Salmonidae was obtained this season on the 12th 
of January. 

The elevation, among the New Year's honours, of 
Sir John Lubbock, F.R. S., to the peerage may be 
taken as a compliment to science, though we doubt 
whether, without his ability and versatility in other 
directions, such as politics and commerce, the Govern- 
ment would have shown so much gratitude for past 
services, unless that virtue is to be considered, 
as is sometimes said, "a lively sense of favours to 

It is consoling to find that Sir John Lubbock has 
felt the influence of the science of archaeology in the 
choice of his title. He owns in Wiltshire an inte- 
resting property, described by himself in " Prehistoric 
Times " as containing the greatest of the so-called 
Druidical monuments. It is the Temple of Avebury 
or Abury, which "is much less known than Stone- 
henge, and yet though a ruder, a grander temple. " 
According to Aubrey, it " did as much exceed Stone- 
henge as a cathedral does a parish church." Sir 
John will in future be known as the Right Hon. 
Lord Avebury. 

We are glad that the " Times,'' and also " Nature," 
in its issue of 18th January, call attention to the 
raison d'etre of parliamentary representatives of the 
Universities. The notes in our contemporaries are 
inspired by the coming election for the vacancy in 
the University of London caused by the elevation of 
Sir John Lubbock to the Peerage. As pointed out, 
the only object in giving the seats of instruction such 
representation is that the members returned should be 
of eminence in science or learning, and thus useful 
with advice on special subjects. General politics 
should be largely out of consideration in the selec- 
tion, otherwise the Universities may find disfranchise- 
ment possible when the next redistribution of seats 
comes to be considered. At the present moment 
these remarks apply to both candidates for election, 
who, though doubtless useful in the arena of politics, 
cannot claim such qualifications as are due in the 
representative of the University of London. Even 
still it is to be hoped a man of sufficient distinction 
may be found. 



Dr. ELLIOTT Cones, the eminent ornithologist 
of North America, died whilst under a cardiac 
operation at Baltimore on December 25th. lie was 
born in New Hampshire fifty-seven years before. 
After a college training he entered the United States 
Army Medical Service. Later he became respectively 
Professor of Zoology, Anatomy, and Biology in 
various colleges. As an ornithologist he had a world - 
« ide reputation. He was natural science editor of 
the "Century Dictionary," his work therein being in 
itself monumental. 

It is with some surprise we note several newspapers 
have supported the opinion that the year 1900 is the 
first of the series of the twentieth century. We have 
also had several letters asking our opinion. Perhaps 
our correspondents favouring the idea would be satis- 
fied to receive ^99 in full settlement of a ^100 ac- 
count. Again, supposing a person born a fraction 
after midnight on the first day of the Christian era 
were to have lived over a century, the second 
century could not have commenced until the end of 
the year 100 or a fraction of time in the year 101. 
We are still in the 19th century, and many things 
may yet happen before its conclusion. 

At the Crystal Palace, where some little work in 
pisciculture has been going on for some months, a 
new society has been formed with the title of The 
Society of Experimental Fish Culture. The sub- 
scription of one guinea is to include a season ticket to 
the Palace, so pleasure can be combined with the 
duties that the members have taken upon them- 
selves. These include the formation of an economic 
museum which shall be worthy of the name, the ex- 
perimental rearing of fresh-water fish, and the 
attempt to further those fishing interests which do 
not receive adequate official attention in this country. 
All the tanks, ponds, and the hatchery at Sydenham 
will be at the disposal of the members. It is to be 
sincerely hoped that the right men will be found to 
come forward to do the work, and that there will be 
more such support given to the society as will enable 
anything that is attempted to be done really well. 

A movement is being energetically pushed for- 
ward by Mrs. Farquharson, of Houghton, Netherton, 
Meigle, to induce those scientific and learned 
societies which still close their membership against 
the admission of women to elect them. We really 
do not see that there can be any objection to the ad- 
mission of fully qualified and earnest female workers, 
many of whom are quite as able as men to conduct 
scientific investigation. The ballot-box should be 
enough to exclude the "shrieking sisterhood," or 
others than those who are known to be doing serious 
and successful work. Indeed it might have the 
effect of raising the quality of the future male fellow- 
ship of some of the Chartered Societies, which have 
latterly been accused of increasing their annual sub- 
scription revenue without a sufficient investigation of 
the qualifications of candidates elected. 

The course of lectures on " The Wonders of 
Creation," which were delivered by Mr. Cecil 
Carus-Wilson, under the auspices of the Parents' 
National Educational Union, at the Horbury Rooms, 
Notting Hill Gate, before Christmas, were attended 
by over 400 boys and girls, chiefly from the private 
schools in the neighbourhood. Owing to the suc- 
cess of these lectures, and a wish expressed by the 
majority of the ticket-holders, four more lectures 
have been arranged, commencing February 1st. A 
similar series will also be held at the Conservatoire, 
Ilampstead, starting on February 5th. 

Since the commencement of the New Series, it 
has been the policy of SciENCE-Gossir to strictly 
avoid any reference to subjects that might give pain 
to readers possessing religious convictions of what- 
ever faith. We cannot, however, help regretting the 
unfortunate disputes between Dr. St. George Mivart 
and his Church, which have culminated in his virtual 
expulsion, as announced by Cardinal Vaughan. With 
all its strength, there is still one thing stronger, and 
that is freedom of human thought at the end of the 
nineteenth century ; so treasured is it indeed that its 
ablest sons will be lost to any Church that attempts 
to fetter scientific and enlightened progress. 

A good deal of nonsense has been written since 
the commencement of the Boer war with regard to 
the power of ordinary binocular field glasses. It is 
claimed that some supplied to the Boer army magnify 
up to twenty diameters. We learn from Messrs. 
Ross, of New Bond Street, London, that the limit of 
magnification which can be used with advantage in 
binocular field glasses does not exceed ten times. 
We learn also that Messrs. Ross are supplying the 
British Government, for army purposes, with tele- 
scopes which have undergone severe tests at the Kew 
Observatory, and been found to magnify up to forty 

Very patriotic are the names that have been 
given to some of the fine orchids that have recently 
been exhibited at the shows of the Royal Horti- 
cultural Society. Chamberlainia triumphans, given 
to a truly fine plant, was the first, and at a more 
recent meeting there were two hybrid claimants for 
the title Lord Roberts. One gained a certificate, 
and hence was thought to have most right to an 
honourable varietal name, but the other, though a 
Cypripediitm also, if not of the same species, may 
assume it as well. 

Dr. J. W. Gregory, of the Geological Depart- 
ment of the Natural History Museum, who has been 
elected to the chair of Geology at Melbourne, leaves 
England in February. He is one of those quiet but 
exceedingly brilliant men that we ought to keep for 
our own use, but for whom we cannot afford to pay 
apparently. Many readers will recall the expedition 
to Africa which Dr. Gregory took up country by 
himself when the party to which he was attached as 
naturalist broke up. 

We regret to have to record the death of Mr. 
John Ruskin. Though better known for his artistic 
writings, philosophical science owes him a debt of 
gratitude for the manner in which he has made 
interesting what might otherwise have been dry 

We have received the first number of a new 
magazine entitled " The International Monthly." It 
is published by Messrs. Macmillan & Co., of New 
York and London, and contains articles by writers 
from New York, Paris, Harvard, and London. Con- 
tributions are promised from Berlin, Leipzig, < )xford, 
and many other universities, on history, psychology, 
sociology, comparative religion, biology, geology, 
etc. The editor is Frederick A. Richardson, of 

A correspondent asks if we can tell him the 
best way to clean a brainstone-coral and a star- 
coral that are a little discoloured with dust. The 
specimens were bought twenty years since in London, 
when the dealer told him they could be cleaned by 
boiling in sulphuric acid, which would, of course, 
dissolve them. Any information would oblige our 





Position at Noon. 











Sun .. 1 . 

• 7- 41 a 

.m. .. 4.47 p 


. 20.59 •• 

17.9 S: 

11 . 

• 7-24 

.. 5.4 

. 21.39 .. 


21 . 

• 7-4 

• • 5-24 

. 22.18 .. 




Sets A 

ge at Noon 





d. h. m. 

Moon 1 . 

7.56 a 

m. . . 1.30 p 

m. . 

. 7.20 p m 

1 10 37 

11 . 

■ 2-17 P 

m. . . 10.14 P 

m. . 

. 5.30 a.m 

11 10 37 

21 . 

. 0.15 a 

m. . . 4.43 a 

m. . 

. 9.5 a.m. 

21 10 37 
at Noon. 


ouths. Semi 




h.m. Diameter, h.m. 


Mercury . 

1 . . 

11.52 a.m. .. 


.. 20.37 

. 20.40 S. 

11 . . 

0.22 p.m. . . 



■ 15-31 

21 . . 



.. 22.56 

• 8.3 


. 1 . . 

2.23 p m. . 


.. 25.8 

. 6.58 s. 

11 . . 



.. 23.52 

■ x -* 8 „ 

21 .. 



. * O.36 

. 3.26 N. 


11 . . 

11.52 a.m. . . 



. . 17.0 S. 


11 . . 

7.2 a.m. .. 


.. l6.25 

. 20.49 s. 


. 11 . . 

8.45 a.m. .. 


-. I8.9 

. 22.6 S. 


11 . . 

7.18 a.m. .. 


.. l6.42 

. 22.11 S. 


11 . . 

8.10 p.m. . . 


•• 5.36 

. 22.3 N. 

Moon's Phases. 

h.m. h.m. 

\st (Jr. .. Feb. 6 .. 4.23 p.m. Full . . Feb. 14 .. 1.50 p.m. 
ydQr... ,, 22 . . 4.44 p.m. 

In perigee, February 1st, at o a.m. ; and in apogee 
on i6th, at I a.m. 


Feb. 15-20 .a Serpentids .. Radiant R.A. 15.44 Dec. 11° N. 

Conjunctions of Planets with the Moon. 

Feb. 2 .. Venus* .. 2 p.m. .. planet 6.52 S. 

,,23 .. Jupiter .. 4 a.m. .. ,, 1.31 N. 

,,24 .. Saturnf •• 10 p.m. .. ,, 0.26 S. 

,,28 .. Marsf •■ 11 p.m. .. ,, 6.21 S. 

* Daylight. t Below English horizon. 

Occultations and Near Approaches. 



Re- Angle 




appears, from 

Feb. Star. 


h. m. 


h. m. Vertex. 

2..K Piscium 

.. 5-0 • 

. 6.56 p.m. 

.. 65 •• 

7.43 p.m. .. 172 

6.. 8 Arietis 

•• 45 ■ 

. 8.36 p.m. 

.. 93 .. 

9.24 p.m. .. 175 

8.. 51 Tauri 

.. 5.4 . 

. 1.57 a.m. 

■ 143 -• 

Near approach. 

8.. 5 6Tauri 

.. 5.4 . 

. 2.3 a.m. 

.. 81 .. 

2.49 a.m. . . 209 

9-.« Tauri 

.. 5.2 . 

. 3.50 a.m. 

.. 99 .. 

Below English 

16.. e Leonis 

.. 5-i • 

. 7.51p.m. 

..242 .. 

Near approach. 

The Sun is now frequently quite free from spots ; 
but its mottled surface should be studied on every 
available occasion, special advantage being taken of 
a still frosty fog. 

Mercury is too close to the sun for observation 
until near the end of the month, when it is an 
evening star. In superior conjunction with the sun 
at 9 p.m. on February 9th. At the end of the month 
it sets some 80 minutes after the sun. 

Venus is an evening star all the month, getting 
daily into better position for observation, not setting 
for more than three hours after the sun. After 5th 
it is situated in Pisces. 

Mars is too close to the sun for observation. 
Ju itter rises nearly five hours earlier than the 
sun at the end of February, situated in Ophiuchus. 

Saturn is also a morning star, situated in Sagit- 
tarius, between the three magnitude stars ju and A. ; 
does not rise until nearly two hours later than 

Uranus is in Ophiuchus, a little east-south-east of 

Neptune may still be observed near £ Tauri. 

Zodiacal Light may be looked for in the eastern 
sky towards the end of the month. 

The Paris Academy of Sciences has be- 
stowed the Laland prize upon Mr. W. R. Brooks for 
his cometary discoveries. The Valz prize has been 
awarded to M. Nyren, of Poulkowa, for his sidereal 

Variable Stars.— Colonel Markwick, having 
consented to become Director of the Variable Star 
section of the British Astronomical Association, pre- 
pared a most practical address to the members of 
the section, which was read by Mr. Maunder at the 
meeting of the Association at Sion College on the 
27th December. 

"An Easy Guide to the Constellations," 
by the Rev. James Gall, with thirty plates and six 
key maps 5^ in. x 4^ in., has recently been revised, 
and contains an additional five plates. It is a very 
handy book for the young observer to learn the con- 
figuration of the various stars forming the constella- 
tions. It is issued by Gall & Inglis for one 

Daylight Meteor. — Many people in the 
south of England appear to have been fortunate 
enough to observe a most brilliant meteor a little 
before three on the afternoon of January 9th, when 
the sun was shining brightly. It is said to have 
resembled an incandescent gas light in brilliance and 
colour, and to have left a trail in its wake. Its 
shape was kite-like, and it threw off flakes of light. 

The Eclipse of the Moon. — We were much 
interested to find an account of the eclipse on 
December 16th, illustrated by four diagrams, in the 
" Daily Chronicle " of the 18th of that month. 

The November Leonids Although several 

observers saw meteors, many of them undoubtedly 
being Leonids, it is now certain that the earth did not 
encounter the great swarm as in 1 866. Mr. T. Tamblyn- 
Watts writes from Settle that on the morning of No- 
vember 15, at 6 o'clock, there were "several Leonids, 
about a dozen inside of five minutes, also other 
meteorites from farther to south." Watch had been 
kept from 11.30 p.m., November 14th, to 6.30 a.m. 
on the 15th, and again from 10.30 p.m. on 15th to 
7 a.m. on 16th, but only a few other meteors were 
seen. Mr. VV. Robertson, of Ootacamund, Hindostan, 
writes that the meteoric shower " was very poor 
here." He made, however, some successful observa- 
tions, which have been forwarded by Professor Michie 
Smith, the Director of the Government Observatory, 
to Professor Pickering of Harvard College. 

The Quadrantids, according to Professor A. S. 
Herschel observing at Slough, were very abundant 
this year. From 11 p.m. on January 2nd until 
4.30 a.m. on the 3rd the meteors fell continuously at 
the rate of about twenty-five per hour, and some of 
considerable brilliance. 



By Frank C. Dennett. 


(Continued from page 251.) 

There is a faint light known as the Gegenschein, 
apparently connected with the Zodiacal light, which 
has been repeatedly observed by Barnard and others. 
It becomes visible in the Zodiac, about opposite to the 
sun's place, and so, during the winter months, should 
be looked for on dark, starry nights in the portion of 
the ecliptic upon the meridian at midnight. 

Returning more directly to the sun itself, there is 
much which, to the ordinary individual, becomes 
visible only at the time of a total solar eclipse. 
Then, when the sun's brilliance is hidden behind the 
dark body of the moon, the corona arrests the eye, 
encircling the sun like the glory around the head of 
a pictured saint. Close study shows the corona to 
be partly made up of rays. Comparing eclipse with 
eclipse, variations are found to make themselves 
apparent in this appendage. The times when sun- 
spots are in greatest abundance have the corona 
pretty equally distributed all round the disc, any rays 
then occurring mostly about 45° from the poles of the 

Total Eclipse of the Sun, August 9TH, 18 

sun, and not extending to great lengths. On the 
other hand, when sunspots are near the minimum, 
the corona is rifted over the poles, whilst near the 
equator there are great extensions. 

The finest photograph of the coronal rays yet 
taken was that by Mrs. Maunder on a Sandell plate 
during the eclipse of January 21st, 1898. The 
longest ray extended a length about equal to six 
diameters of the sun. Another photograph of the 
corona, taken by the Russian expedition to Nova 
Zembla during the eclipse of August 9th, 1896, is 
reproduced for purposes of comparison. 

The corona, studied by help of the spectroscope, 
is found to give a faint continuous spectrum — pre- 
sumably reflected sunlight — and one green line, at 
first thought to be one of the lines due to iron, but 
which is now known to come from an element called 
coronium. Hydrogen and helium are also found to 
be present in the corona. Anything further with 
regard to this wonderful appendage is clouded in 

Another feature visible at the total eclipses of the 
sun is the red prominence. These "flames" had 
been observed previously to the Indian eclipse of 
August 1868, but it was not until that occasion that 
the nature of them was revealed. The spectroscopes 
of Captain J. Herschel, M. Janssen, Colonel Ten- 
nant, and M. Rayet showed these prominences to be 
composed of incandescent gas, principally hydrogen. 
Directly this was an ascertained fact, hopes were 
raised that the spectroscope would show them at any 
time when the sky was clear. This had already been 
pointed out by Sir W. Huggins. Sir J. N. Lockyer 
and M. Janssen succeeded in observing the spectrum 
of the prominences on the day following the eclipse, 
and before the news reached England Lockyer had 
succeeded in making a similar observation. Very 
soon it was found that by opening the slit of a 
spectroscope of considerable dispersion, not only the 
spectrum, but the entire prominence could be ob- 
served. These objects are of enormous size, some- 
times reaching 70,000 miles or more above the ap- 
parent level of the sun. Notwithstanding their great 
magnitude, very extensive changes take place, some- 
times in the interval of less than a quarter of an hour. 
Perhaps the grandest exhibition which it has fallen 
to the lot of an observer to witness took place on 
September 7, 1871. Professor Young, then of Dart- 
mouth College, 
Hanover, N.H., 
saw a cloud of 
hydrogen some 
100,000 miles in 
length lying with 
its lower surface 
about 15,000 
miles above the 
sun's limb, 
whilst the upper 
surface had an 
altitude of 
54,000 miles. 
Thus it was at 
12.30, but by 
12.55 the whole 
had been, as it 
were, blown to 
shreds, which 
had already 
reached a height 
of nearly 100,000 
miles. So rapid 
was the motion 
that by 1. 15 the height attained was over 200,000 
miles ; so that the filaments were ascending at the 
rate of about 166 miles per second. These beautiful 
rose-tinted prominences seem to occur in almost any 
latitude, and not to be confined to the zones in 
which the spots appear, as would seem most natural 
to expect. 

From time to time observers in various places have 
fancied that they have observed planetary or cometary 
bodies in transit over the sun, which some have sup- 
posed to be a planet revolving within the orbit of 
Mercury, and which has been even named Vulcan, 
but which is now usually believed to have no real 

Note.— On p. 251, column 2, 2nd line from 
bottom, for " I approximate," read " it approxi- 
mates ; " last line, for " is, in my opinion, vertical," 
read " is lenticular." 

'To he continued.") 




Monograph of British Land Shells. — The 
notice of the fifth part of J. W. Taylor's Monograph, 
which has already appeared in Science-Gossip {ante, 
p. 242), deals more with the treatment of the ana- 
tomical points than with that accorded to questions of 
physiology. Admirably maintained as is the general 
excellence of the work, it is to be regretted that the 
physiology of the present instalment falls so far short 
of the anatomy. On more than one occasion Mr. 
Taylor has made statements which cause one to 
regret more than ever that he has not seen fit as yet 
to give references to his authorities beyond two short 
lists in the earlier parts of the work. If, for instance, 
one would refer to the original of fig. 515, in the 
hope of finding further details about the development 
of the radula, one has to go elsewhere to discover 
where RSssler's paper is to be found, and so on in 
many other cases. This apparent abhorrence of any 
reference to other literature can hardly arise from 
considerations of economy of space when such 
elaborate details are given as to the place of origin 
and the captor of typical specimens figured. Perhaps 
a bibliography will appear in time. There does not 
seem, however, to be any means of referring the 
different parts of the text to such a list, beyond a 
certain number of names, which in any case will 
make reference very difficult. On p. 280 we learn 
that "the ferment is a rather thin, dark yellowish 
fluid, decolorised and dissolved by nitric acid, and is 
probably a derivative of haematoidin." It would 
surely have been as well to give some authority, 
unless it is an observation by Mr. Taylor himself, for 
the highly original proposition that a digestive ferment 
is derived from a pigment related to haemoglobin, or 
from a vertebrate bile-pigment. The discovery by 
W. Biedermann and S. Moritz (Pfliiger's Archiv, 
vol. lxxiii. [1898], pp. 219-287 : abstract in Journ. 
Chem. Soc, March 1899, p. 166) of a ferment 
apparently secreted by the ' ' liver " in Helix pomatia, 
which is capable of dissolving cellulose, is not men- 
tioned. The formula given for glycogen on p. 280 
is, we presume, only a printer's error, and on the 
next page there seems to be some confusion as to the 
conditions which influence the presence of this sub- 
stance in the liver. It is said to disappear entirely 
after one to three days' fasting, and yet an estimable 
quantity is present during hibernation. The work of 
Barfurth on the metabolism of inorganic salts by the 
liver in H. po7natia seems to share an unworthy 
oblivion with similar work by Dastre and others. 
The derivation given on p. 295 for haemoglobin 
may be ultimately correct, but it hardly seems likely 
that Hoppe-Seyler was thinking of spheres when he 
gave the name. Further on (pp. 282-3) we read, 
"This absorption of the nutritive products of digestion 
from the alimentary canal is not accomplished by 
special organs, as in vertebrates, but is effected by 
endosmosis through the intestinal walls into the 
blood contained within a plexus of blood vessels dis- 

tributed over the whole surface of the alimentary 
canal." We can only ask Mr. Taylor for further 
information as to what the special absorptive organs 
are in vertebrates which are absent in the mollusca, 
and what the evidence may be that in the snail absorp- 
tion takes place by "endosmosis." The account of 
the chemistry of the blood seems inadequate ; and 
it would be almost worth while in a work of this size 
to quote some analyses in detail ; the work of A. B. 
Griffiths, at any rate (Proc. Roy. Soc. Edinb. 
vol. xviii. pp. 292-3, and in Physiol, of Invert, pp. 
141 and 145) is easily available. The words on 
p. 296 to the effect that "the Amoebocytes seem 
from their origin to be connective tissue cells 
especially adapted to live in an albuminous medium," 
imply that connective tissue cells, as a rule, live in 
a non-albuminous medium, which would be a diffi- 
cult proposition to establish ; and in connection with 
the same subject attention may be called to the fact 
that all the wandering cells of the blood are not by any 
means necessarily phagocytic. A full and interest- 
ing account is given of the relation of snails to 
plants and of the influence of temperature and some 
other conditions on the rate of the heart-beat and on 
the rate of respiration, but nothing seems to be said 
about what is known as to the action of other factors 
(drugs, &c. ) on the snail's heart, nor about the 
quantitative chemistry of the respiratory exchange in 
relation to temperature (see H. M. Vernon, Journ. of 
Physiol, xxi. [1897] p. 454). The opinion of 
Merejkowski (1881) that tetronerythrin is respiratory 
in function, quoted (without authority) on p. 307, 
has been seriously challenged by Halliburton (Journ. 
of Physiol, vi. [1885] p. 327), and according to the 
usage of the inventor of the names and others, myohae- 
matin is one of the histohaematins. It may be said, 
and very likely quite correctly, that in a work of the 
present kind an elaborate and detailed account of 
the physiology of the mollusca, or of the little we 
know of it, would be out of place. If nothing had 
been said about, e.g., the natures of ferments or 
leucocytes, no exception could have been taken to 
what would have been a very reasonable omission. 
Yet since Mr. Taylor has gone into such matters at 
all, it is a pity that he has not given us something 
less superficial, and, one would venture to say, less 
inaccurate, than some of the sentences to which we 
have called attention. We would finally like to 
raise a protest against the use of the Fahrenheit 
scale of temperature, which is as objectionable as the 
previous use of grains in the matter of weight. The 
value of the excellent illustrations is also in some 
cases considerably diminished by the practice of not 
giving even the approximate magnification of the 
enlarged figures ; thus figures 564 and 587 are both 
" highly magnified," but, if one were to suppose that 
the two objects were anything like equally enlarged, 
one would get a strange idea of the size of either the 
gut or the leucocytes ; and with which of these are we 
to compare fig. 606, also marked "highly magni- 
fied"? Fig. 572 would appear to be natural size, 
but it must have been a Helix virgata of record size 

to yield such a preparation Arthur E. Boycott. 

Production of Sound by Mollusca. — Our in- 
digenous forms are not usually credited with the power 
of emitting any sounds which might reasonably be 
called audible. I have, however, frequently noticed 
that the sound, something like " pblopb," caused by 
Limnaea stagnalis opening their respiratory orifices 
at the surface of the water, may be heard some 
distance. — Arthur E. Boycott, 31 Walton Crescent, 



A New Species ok Slug. — In the current number 
of the "Journal of Malacology" (vol. vii. No. 4, 
p. 78), Mr. Collinge describes a new species of 
Auadcuus from China recently received by the 
British Museum. He calls it A. sechuenensis from 
its locality, and gives a detailed account of its ana- 
tomy ; but owing to the fact that so little is known 
ar-out the structure of allied forms, it is impossible to 
dwell much upon the affinities of this or the other 
species of slugs he mentions. — W. M. Webb. 

Notes from Buckinghamshire. — One speci- 
men of Bythinia tentaculata was found by us in the 
upper reaches of the river Thames near Aylesbury, 
Bucks, with a narrow opaque white spiral band ; the 
shell was a full-grown one. A number of young 
Physa fontinalis taken in the same spot we kept 
for some time and watched. They were most lively 
and were like a number of schoolboys who would not 
leave one another alone. They appeared to be play- 
ing together, and when their excitement reached its 
highest pitch they let off their superfluous energy by 
causing the shell to gyrate in a most peculiarly rapid 
manner. — {Rev. ) E. Percy Blackburn. 

Mollusca in Intermittent STREAMS.--In 
the summer of 1899 I found specimens of Aplc.xa 
hypnorum, Limnaea percger, L. truncalula, Planor- 
bis vortex, and a Pisidium too young for identifica- 
tion on the top of Alconbury Hill, Hunts. They 
occurred in a ditch in Cow Lane above Alconbury, 
where the stream is intermittent, and sometimes the 
ditch is quite dried up. L. percger also occurs in small 
intermittent pools on the Abbott's Ripton road, an 
ancient grass cattle- road. The above-named species 
have therefore solved the problem of living in the 
summer with an intermittent supply of moisture. 
The specimens alluded to are not undersized. — {Rev.) 
R. Ashington Bullen, F.L.S., Axeland, Horlcy. 

[When staying at Eton Wick during last summer 
I found quite a number of fresh- water shells alive 
and well, under the vegetable growth and refuse at 
the bottom of a dried-up stream. Pisidium fonti- 
nale was amongst them, and I have often noticed 
that the smaller members of this genus occur in 
positions that practically entitle them to be called 
terrestrial bivalves. — W.M. W.] 

Rock-boring Helices. — It is stated, on the 
authority of Bouchard-Chantereux, that the " mucoid 
secretions " in Helix are acid in reaction and therefore 
capable of eroding limestone rocks (J. W. Taylor, 
" Monograph," p. 312). In a large number of 
experiments on //. aspersa made some time ago, and 
lately repeated, I found that the general foot and 
mantle mucus, together with the blood and body 
fluids as a whole, were distinctly alkaline to litmus ; 
the contents of the gut on the other hand are, as a 
rule, acid, and after discharges of fluid from this 
source the snail might be able to claim that he 
monies rumpit accto. If the general skin secretion 
were acid, the calcium carbonate present in it would 
keep the snail in a perpetual state of fizzing. — Arthur 
E. Boycott, Oxford, January 12th, 190.. 

The Mollusca of Buckinghamshire Quite 

recently Mr. John R. B. Masefield has alluded to the 
small number of molluscs recorded from Buckingham- 
shire ("Journal of Conchology," vol. ix. p. 283). He 
has only been able to find thirty-three species men- 
tioned, and to these he adds five. All of these, with 
the exception of C/ausilia laminata, were given 
among the fifty which the writer was able to record 
last year with the kind help of Mr. Lionel Adams 

(Appendix to the " Guide to Eton College Museum,' 
June 1, 1899). The number has now been increased 
to sixty, mainly by the addition of fresh-water species 
which it was possible to collect in the dry weather of 
last summer ; but it would be well if, as Mr. Masefield 
suggests, the attention of collectors was turned to 
Buckinghamshire, and one may add to Berkshire as 
well.— Wilfred Mark Webb. 

Mounting Shells in Museums. — A propos of 
Mr. Wilfred M. Webb's approval of Messrs. Boycott 
& Bowell's remarks on mounting shells (S. G. for 
Jan. p. 253), I would draw attention to a very 
simple system for univalve marine shells, which I 
saw in the Peabody Museum, Yale, in 1897. The 
mount consisted of a solid wooden block, painted 
or varnished, with a brass wire inserted centrally in 
the block and proportionate to the length of the 
shell mounted. The end of the wire was seemingly 
bent for insertion in the mouth of the shell, which 
was mounted in a perpendicular position. Great 
economy of space was gained, every part of the shell 
was available for inspection, and, I believe, could be 
dismounted for closer examination — (Rev. ) R. Ash- 
ington Bullen, F.L.S., F.G.S., Axe land, Ho r ley. 

Species of the Genus Limnaea. — In this 
column for last month (S.G., ante, p. 253) the doubt- 
ful differentiation of the forms we know as Limnaea 
pereger and L. auricularia into separate species was 
touched upon. Since the words in question were 
written, Mr. George W. Chaster has published an 
interesting note upon some hybrids, or, as he would 
suggest, mongrels between Limnaea stagnalis ( $ ) and 
L. auricularia ( ? ) (" Journal of Conchology," vol. ix. 
pp. 282-3). The remarkable point about the obser- 
vation is that the shells of the progeny which survived 
are unmistakably those of Limnaea pereger. In this 
Mr. Chaster sees a case of that reversion to ancestral 
form which is known to occur as a result of crossing. 
It seems somewhat of a pity that the specimens were 
all killed, and that a series of experiments were not 
made with them. Before, however, the full significance 
of the likeness shown by the offspring of X. stagnalis 
and L. auricularia to Z. pereger can be estimated, it 
must be shown whether or no the pure -bred offspring 
of the second species may not sometimes be indis- 
tinguishable from the third. — Wilfred ALark Webb. 

The Colouring of some Essex Shells.— At 
Tendring, Essex, there was a large colony of Helix 
aspersa var. exalbida in our garden. The lack of 
pigment was also very striking among Helix hortensis. 
The bands on these shells were very frequently trans- 
parent instead of being dark. A lack of pigment was 
shared also by many plants, notably sweetbriar, 
clover, docks, and brambles. Lady Rothschild's 
head gardener at Ashton Clinton, Bucks, had 
noticed the same thing there. He attributed it to 
excess of iron in the soil. The well at Tendring was 
decidedly impregnated with iron. We noted also 
that during the great drought of 1896- 1897 the 
markings on the shells of Helix asp, rsa were decidedly 
deeper in colour, being in some cases almost black. 
We had also a fine grape-vine in the garden, for which 
these snails had a special weakness. The peculiarity 
in their eating of the fruit lay in that they did not 
attack one berry and finish it, but ate straight across the 
bunch, so straight in fact that this looked as if it had 
been cut with a razor. It may be worth while to 
record a specimen of Llelix iiemora/is with a single- 
black band with an opaque white beside it on a pink 
ground. — (Rev.) E. Percy Blackburn. 





Royal Meteorological Society.— The annual 
meeting of this Society was held on Wednesday even- 
ing, January 17th, at the Institution of Civil Engi- 
neers, Great George Street, Westminster, Mr. F. C. 
Bayard, LL. M., President, in the chair. The Secre- 
tary read the report of the Council, which showed 
that the most noteworthy event in connection with 
the Society had been the removal of the offices and 
library from 22 Great George Street to new rooms at 
70 Victoria Street. This step was rendered necessary 
by the acquisition of the former premises by the 
Commissioners of Her Majesty's Works and Public 
Buildings for the erection of new Government offices. 
Mr. F. Campbell Bayard in his presidential address 
■discussed the meteorological observations made at 
the Royal Observatory, Greenwich, during the fifty- 
one years 1848-1898, and brought out in a novel way 
many interesting features in the variability of the 
various observations of the barometer, maximum and 
minimum temperatures, relative humidity, direction 
of the wind and rainfall. These were shown in a 
diagrammatic form on the screen by means of a 
number of lantern slides. The address was also 
illustrated by various views of the Royal Observatory 
and of the instruments employed. Mr. G. J. Symons, 
F.R.S., was elected President for the ensuing year. 

The South London Entomological and 
Natural History Society. — Dec. 14th, Dr. 
Chapman, F. L.S., Vice-President, in the chair. 
Mr. Robson exhibited a bred series of unusually 
large specimens of Dianthoecia irregularis, from 
Luddenham. Major Ficklin, a specimen of D. 
luteago, v. ficklini, which he presented to the 
Society's collection. Mr. Lucas, a specimen of 
Somatochlora metallica, a rare dragonfly taken by 
Mr. C. A. Briggs, and presented by him to the 
Society's collection. Mr. Adkin, examples of 
Crambus geniculeus taken in his garden, of a much 
less robust appearance and with very faintly indi- 
cated markings. Mr. Edwards, long series of the 
following species of Erebia taken by himself in the 
neighbourhood of Firsio, the Simplon and Ma- 
cugnaga, E. ceto, E. lappona, E. goante, E. tyndarus, 

E. eitryale, E. flavofasciata, E. mclampus, E. 
■epip/iron, E. mnestra, and a few specimens of E. 
ligca, E. pronoe, E. medusa, and E. gorge. Mr. 

F. M. B. Carr, a series of insects taken at sugar, 
including two Cosstis ligniperda, and about a dozen 
Macrogaster ariuidinis from Wicken. Mr. J. F. 
Carrington (the editor of Science-Gossip) then 
gave an address on the subject, " Meteorites." 
Jan. nth, Mr. A. Harrison, F.L.S., president, in 
the chair. — Mr. Buckstone exhibited larvae of 
Tripliaena fimbria, some of a light form and some 
of a dark form, and read notes on their growth, 
mortality, and pupation. Mr. Turner, (1) a specimen 
of Periplaneta americaita from the Zoological Gar 
dens ; (2) a var. of Melanippe fluctuata, with the 
central band only represented by a narrow costal 
fascia ; (3) a specimen of Abraxas grossulariata, 
with a large black spot surrounded by a white ring, 

outside of which the black was nearly continuous ; 
(4) a dried cactaceous plant, Echinocactus cornigei its. 
Mr. Lucas, several lantern-slides of well-known 
scenery in the neighbourhood of Esher. Mr. F. 
Clarke exhibited a large number of very admirable 
photomicrographic slides of insect anatomy, including 
a long series of Orgyia antiqua, antennae of various 
orders, a few of tongues, feet, &c, a curious water 
hymenopteron, numerous ova of various species of 
lepidoptera, a few desmids, and living examples of 
Argulus foliaceus, the parasite of the stickleback. — 
Hy. J. Turner, Hon. Report Sec. 

Geological Society. December 20th, 1899, 
W. Whitaker, F.R.S., President, in the chair. — 
Dr. P. L. Sclater exhibited a large diagram of a 
new bore lately made for the Zoological Society of 
London, in the bottom of the old well in the Society's 
Gardens, Regent's Park. The section was a valuable 
addition to the literature of the water-supply from 
wells in the surrounding district. — On some effects 
of earth-movement on the Carboniferous volcanic 
rocks of the Isle of Man, by G. W. Lamplugh 
(communicated by permission of the Director-General 
of the Geological Survey). The author, since the 
completion of his survey of the Isle of Man, has 
studied the coast-section in the Carboniferous volcanic 
series between Castleton Bay and Poolvash, with the 
result that he has discovered evidence that the strata 
have undergone much deformation in pre-Triassic 
times. In the western part of the outcrop the 
volcanic material consists almost wholly of tuff, in 
places bedded and fossiliferous ; in the eastern part 
exists a chaotic mass of coarse and fine fragmental 
volcanic material, traversed by ridges of basaltic 
rock and containing entangled patches of dark lime- 
stone. The author now considers that the larger 
lenticles and most of the smaller blocks of limestone 
have been torn up from the underlying limestone- 
floor during a sliding forward or overthrusting of 
the volcanic series upon it. The phenomena de- 
scribed may be explained as the effects of earth- 
movement on a group of rocks consisting of lime- 
stone passing up into tuff, interbedded with lava- 
flows, and possibly traversed by sills or dykes of 
basaltic rock. The results of the disturbance ap- 
pear to be limited vertically and horizontally, 
and to have been determined by the differential 
resistance of the component rocks. Analogous 
features occur in the Borrowdale volcanic series and 
in the Silurian volcanic rocks of Portraine. The 
President, after congratulating the author on his 
paper, read the following extract from a letter that he 
had received from Sir Archibald Geikie, who was 
unable to be present : " Having been twice with Mr. 
Lamplugh over the ground which he describes, the 
second time quite recently, since his present views as 
to earth-movement were formed and matured, I am 
glad to bear my testimony to the exhaustive care 
which he has expended on the research. I agree 
with him on the main point — that there is conclusive 
evidence of considerable earth-movement since the 
deposition of the carboniferous volcanic rocks at the 
southern end of the Isle of Man. He seems to me 
to have established this point beyond dispute." — The 
zonal classification of the Wenlock shales of the 
Welsh borderland, by Miss Gertrude L. Elles. This 
paper deals with the Wenlock rocks of Builth, the 
Long Mountain, and the Dee Valley. The results 
obtained by the author completely confirm the work 
of Tullberg on the Wenlock shales of Southern 
Sweden. In the discussion which followed, Professor 
C. Lapworth pointed out the extreme interest of this 



paper, both from the straligraphical and from the 
palaeontological point of view. The zonal mapping of 
the Welsh Silurians commenced by Professor Watts, 
carried through the Rhayader Yalentian by Mr. Herbert 
Lapworth, had here been brought out in detail stage by 
stage through the Wenlocks of the Welsh border by the 
author. — On an intrusion of diabase into Permo-Car- 
boniferous rocks at Frederick Henry Bay (Tasmania), 
by T. Stephens. The relationship of the abundant dia- 
base to the Permo-Carboniferous strata of the island has 
been long a matter of dispute. Among others, Jukes 
describes sections which appeared to confirm the 
view that Permo-Carboniferous sediments were de- 
posited round vast masses of igneous rock previously 
cooled and denuded. The author has identified and 
visited the sections, and finds in one that, although 
there is a step-like junction between the sediments 
and the igneous rock, it is the result of the intrusion 
of diabase, and not of the deposition of sediment. 
The sediment, which is fossiliferous, is converted into 
an intensely hard whitish marble, and the associated 
shale-bands into chert. The diabase, which is ordi- 
narily an ophitic rock, acquires at the junction a 
finely crystalline-granular texture. Jukes's second 
section also gives undoubted evidence of intrusion. 


Ordinary meetings are marked f, excursions * ; names of 
persons following excursions areof Conductors. § Lantern 

Royal Institution of Great Britain. 

Feb. 9. — fSymbiosis and Symbiotic Fermentation. Professor 

J. Reynolds Green, Sc.D., F.R.S. 

„ 16.— fLife in Indo-China. H. Warington Smyth, M.A., 

LL.M., F.R.G.S. 
„ 23. — t Recent Studies in Gravitation. Professor John H. 
Poynting, Sc.D., F.R.S. 
Frederick Bramwell, Hon. Sec. , A Ibemarle Street, W. 

South London Entomological and Natural History 

Feb. 8. — fOn the Relation of the Larval to the Imaginal 
Legs in Lepidoptera. Dr. T. A. Chapman, 
F.Z.S., F.E.S. 
,, 22.— §Another Life History. Fred. Enock, F.L.S., 
Stanley Edwards, Hon. Sec, Hibernia Chambers, S.E. 

North London Natural History Society. 
Feb. 1.— tls Civilised Man Natural? Miss B. Nicholson. 
,, 10. — Visit to Geological Museum, Jermyn Street. J. W. 

Rudler, F.G.S., Curator. 
„ 15.— fThe Life of a Plant. J.Wheeler. 
Mar. 1. — t Discussion on Season in 1899. 

„ 15.— t The Primrose Family. Miss E. M. Dale. 
,, 24. — * Zoological Gardens, Regent's Park. 
C. Nicholson, F.E.S., Hon. Sec, 

202 Evering Road, Clapton, N.E. 

Lambeth Field Clup and Scientific Society. 
Feb. 5. — tThe Evolution of our Railways. T. Husson. 
,, 17. —Visit to Natural History Museum (Bird Gallery). 

W. Johnson. 
,, 19. — ^Photographic Evening — Developers. W. Rivers. 
F. P. Perks, Hon. Sec, 41 St. Martin's Lane, W.C. 

The Sidcup Literary and Scientific Society. 
Feb. 6,-fFrench Literature in the 18th and 19th Centuries. 
J. J. Burrows. 
,, 20.— fEdison's Inventions. (',. McKenzie Mann. 
.S\ E. Curry, Hon. Sec, Brighton Villa, Main Road, Sidcup. 

Selhorne Seen: 1 v. 

Feb. 22.— tGilbert White and Selborne. E. A. Martin. 

Edward A. Martin, F.G.S,, Hon. Sec, 

23 Campbell Road, West Croydon. 

Hampstead Astronomical and Scientific Society. 
Feb. 2. - tThe Mechanics of the Bicycle and of Bicycle- 
riding. C. O. Bartrum. B.Sc. 
Basil IV. Martin, Hon. Sec, 7 Holly Place, Hampstead. 


In consequence of it having been found necessary 
to again change the printers of Science-Gossip, this 
number is a few days late in publication. 


The Proprietor of Science-Gossip having decided 
to manage the business department from indepen- 
dent offices at no Strand, London, W.C, all 
subscriptions, advertisements and payments for ad- 
vertisements must in future be sent to that address, 
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managed the commercial department for the pro- 

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really one penny, but only half that rate is charged 
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To Correspondents and Exchangers.— Science-Gossu' 
is published on the 25th of each month. All notes or other 
communications should reach us not later than the 18th of 
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Notice. — Exchanges extending to thirty words (including 
name and address) admitted free, but additional words must 
be prepaid at the rate of threepence for every seven words 
or less. 

British and Foreign shells offered in exchange for any 
shells not in collection.— Miss F. Whitear, 5 St. Andrew's 
Road, Enfield. 

Offered, Microscope in case. Five dozen slides in case. 
Wanted collection of Foreign Stamps. William Gomm, Hotel 
du Canynge, Redcliffe Street, Bristol. 

Offered. Good fresh specimen of Petricola pholadiformis 
in exchange for other British Land Freshwater and Marine 
Shells not in collection. Send list of duplicates. — T. Edwards, 
Cliftonville House, Equity Koad, Leicester. 

Wanted, Book on the Microscope by Crowther.— A. 
Nicholson, Carlton House, Greenbank Road, Darlington. 

Offered. Brazilian Butterflies, Beetles ; and other insects. 
Correspondence invited.— A. Hempel, Caixa do Correio Z., 
Sfio Paulo, Brazil. 

Rutherford's " Microtome " and Griffith and Henfrey's 
" Micrographic Dictionary'' offered. Entomological and 
Bacteria slides wanted.— J.Taylor, 83 Upper Gloucester Piac«, 

2 4 FEB. 1900